A New Jersey labor investigator is sentenced to 60 months for taking bribes.
Joseph Rivera, of Winslow, New Jersey, pleaded guilty to one count of solicitation and acceptance of a bribe and one count of tax evasion, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Rivera was a senior investigator with the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development. Rivera’s duties included inspecting temporary labor firms to check compliance with wage and hour laws. According to court documents, Rivera created agreements with his assigned companies to not inspect them and to recommend them to other companies looking for temporary laborers. According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey, Rivera went on to create false certifications stating the companies were in compliance of wage and hour laws.
In exchange, Rivera received a payment from the non-inspected companies of 25 cents for every hour any employee worked for the temporary labor firms. This amounted to $1.86 million in bribes from the temporary staffing firms.
Rivera also filed a tax return claiming income of $89,696 in 2007, while his actual taxable income was $499,176, which resulted in his tax evasion conviction.
In addition to the 60 months in prison, Rivera was ordered to pay $250,000 in restitution and forfeit money and property.
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