Former asbestos contractor sentenced for theft of federal program funds
NEW ORLEANS -– U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans announced that Marc A. Victoriano “Victoriano”, age 46, of Covington, Louisiana, was sentenced today before United States District Court Judge Lance M. Africk to five years probation with 8 months of home confinement for theft from a program receiving federal funds. He was also ordered to pay a mandatory $100 special assessment fee and $212,618 in restitution to the victim, Terrebonne Parish School Board.
According to court records, from 2015 to 2017, Victoriano and his company, Professional Safety Consultants, LLC, (“PSC”) provided asbestos inspections for the Terrebonne Parish School Board (“TPSB”) as mandated by the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (“AHERA”). Victoriano submitted 56 invoices to TPSB with fraudulent asbestos laboratory reports including false air monitoring and false asbestos testing reports. Victoriano also submitted nine invoices to TPSB for AHERA reports with forged signatures and accreditation information. As a result, TPSB paid Victoriano approximately $212,618.26 to which he was not entitled, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 666(a)(1)(A).
“Financial Crime is a despicable felony that impacts many citizens, said U.S. Attorney Duane A. Evans. “However, this scheme to defraud Terrebonne Parish Schools, that placed students and staff in a potentially dangerous situation and financially victimized taxpayers, exponentially aggravated this crime. Our office commits to continue our local, state and federal partnerships to seek justice for our community, especially our most vulnerable populations.”
“The defendant was responsible for the safe and legal removal of material containing asbestos,” said Special Agent in Charge Christopher Brooks of EPA’s criminal enforcement program in Louisiana. “The defendant knowingly ignored regulations on the safe management of asbestos, putting workers, the general public, and most alarmingly school children, at risk. This resulted in the Terrebonne Parish (Louisiana) School Board being defrauded out of $212,618.”
U.S. Attorney Evans praised the work of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Criminal Investigation Division; the Louisiana State Police; Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, Criminal Investigation Section and the Louisiana Environmental Crimes Task Force, for their investigation of matter. Assistant United States Attorney Julia K. Evans is in charge of the prosecution.
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