Tarsem Singh, 61 an Indo-American businessman from Fairfax, Virginia has been sentenced to 15 months in prison in US for illegally obtaining over $6 million in contracts from a federal program, created to assist the minority-owned small businesses in the US.
In the US, the firms owned by minorities, women and ex-servicemen have to meet Small Business Development (SBA) eligibility standards to get federal contracts, and their workers must perform a certain percentage of the contract work. When the companies become oversize, the program becomes ineligible for them, to circumvent these regulations, Singh allegedly established a shell company and made it appear to meet the SBA standards. He identified companies as “A” and “B”, specializing in building construction and renovation, and fraudently obtained more than 25 federal contracts. He also took elaborate steps to conceal the fact that his original company was actually carrying out contracts obtained by the fake company.
Singh was accused guilty of fraud practices related to faking contracts and was sentenced by the Washington Federal court, which fined him $25,000 and also ordered him to pay about $120,000 in restitution. After his prison term, he is also ordered to perform community service for three years.