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Construction Firm Official Pleads Guilty in Kickback Plan

The scheme involved managers at TRW who passed extra costs on to the government, prosecutors say.

October 24, 2002|David Rosenzweig | Times Staff Writer

A construction company executive has admitted authorizing kickbacks to building managers at TRW's Redondo Beach facility so his firm could pad expenses that were passed on to the federal government, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Jeffrey W. Bochesa, 43, vice president of Bob Parrett Construction Co. of Westminster, entered a guilty plea earlier this week in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va., to a charge of conspiring to defraud the government.

Bochesa managed day-to-day operations for Parrett, which had a contract to maintain, repair and improve various Redondo Beach facilities of TRW, a defense and aerospace contractor.

The federal prosecutor's office said the construction company overcharged TRW about $1.4 million from 1996 through 2000, most of which was passed on to the National Reconnaissance Office, a U.S. government intelligence organization with which TRW has a contract.

Bochesa, who lives in Santa Ana, faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced Jan. 30.

Prosecutors said he authorized the payment of about $160,000 in kickbacks to five TRW employees through Marco A. Urrea, 36, a Parrett project manager.

Urrea pleaded guilty last month to conspiring to defraud the government. He is to be sentenced Dec. 5.

One TRW building manager, Jeffrey Zmina, pleaded guilty in May to receiving about $77,000 in gratuities. He, too, is awaiting sentencing. The four other TRW employees have not been named.

Parrett company officials could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

A TRW spokesman said the company is no longer on its list of approved general contractors, but is completing a small number of jobs under its prior contract for work at the South Bay facility.

The spokesman refused to disclose any information about the identity or status of TRW employees implicated in the fraud.

The case grew out of an investigation by the FBI, the Defense Criminal Investigation Service and the inspector general of the National Reconnaissance Office.

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