Fraud and whistle-blower allegations are particularly sensitive and may be politically volatile for public agencies. PII has broad experience investigating conflict of interest, kickbacks, bid rigging, bribery, fraudulent contractor billing, election fraud, favoritism and corruption in fire and building inspections, and violations of health and safety codes in public schools. The firm has presented its findings at closed sessions of elected boards and commissions, as well as at public hearings. PII has helped municipalities recoup millions of public dollars and aided them in preventing future fraud.
With its reputation for neutrality and professionalism, PII has provided comprehensive reports and detailed analyses of findings, assisting public sector organizations facing serious allegations at local, state, and national levels.
When whistle-blowers come forward with damaging accusations, organizations are wise to retain an external investigator who can provide an unbiased view. The allegations may be politically explosive and difficult to prove or disprove. If true, they may trigger the need for institutional changes and reforms. Even when false, whistle-blower complaints can unleash a public relations firestorm.
Experience has taught PII that even when whistle-blower allegations sound far-fetched, sometimes bordering on the outrageous, a closer look at the accusations is often warranted.
Whether the allegations turn out to be founded or unfounded, a report from PII demonstrates that the agency took the charges seriously and initiated prompt action.
PII’s investigations of whistle-blower complaints include:
• A public works director at a Los Angeles area municipality allegedly accepting kickbacks from a construction contractor seeking business with the city.
• A firefighter and a captain accused of cheating on an examination for promotion.
• A public college’s dean accused of steering college business to his spouse’s accounting firm.
• A city councilperson who was accused of conflict of interest in reviewing a zoning variance request and allegedly accepting gifts and campaign contributions from the builder.