– Attorney General Anne Milgram announced
that a Somerset County contractor has pleaded
guilty to submitting false payment claims
on behalf of his family’s company under
a contract to replace doors in four schools
in Clark Township.
to Criminal Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni,
Rantik Parikh, 48, of Warren, and the family
company he operated, Parikh Inc., pleaded
guilty yesterday to a criminal charge of submitting
false contract payment claims before Superior
Court Judge Robert Billmeier in Mercer County.
Under the plea agreement, the state will recommend
that Parikh be sentenced to three years of
probation. Parikh and Parikh Inc. will be
debarred from public contracts in New Jersey
for a period of five years.
Billmeier scheduled sentencing for Dec. 17.
Deputy Attorney General Pearl Minato took
the guilty plea for the Division of Criminal
Justice Corruption Bureau.
defendants were indicted last year for making
false representations in submissions to the
New Jersey Schools Construction Corporation,
now the Schools Development Authority, in
connection with a 2004 contract to replace
doors at the Johnson, Kumpf, Valley Road and
Hehnly Schools in Clark. In pleading guilty,
Parikh admitted that he submitted false certifications
in connection with payment claims filed under
the $295,500 contract.
investigation by the Division of Criminal
Justice Corruption Bureau revealed that the
defendants falsely certified in a January
2005 payment application to the Schools Construction
Corporation that a subcontractor, Rangam Consultants
Inc., had been paid for work performed. They
further certified that any additional money
owed to any subcontractors would be paid within
10 days of receipt of the next contract payment.
Based on the representations, the SCC authorized
a $57,000 payment to Parikh Inc. in May 2005.
However, the state’s investigation revealed
that the first time any money was paid to
Rangam was nearly 18 months after the certification.
Another subcontractor was never paid.
investigation was conducted by Sgt. David
Salzmann and Sgt. Frederick Weidman of the
Division of Criminal Justice Corruption Bureau.