Philadelphia Contractor Convicted at Trial of Bribing OSHA Inspector

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PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Tony Ren, 58, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania was convicted today at trial for bribing a public official from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). The charges arose from Ren’s attempts to bribe an OSHA Compliance Safety and Health Officer in order to induce him not to report safety violations at a Philadelphia construction site run by Ren, and to eliminate previous safety violations and corresponding fines.

In September 2021, the defendant was charged by Indictment with two counts of bribery. According to the Indictment, in October 2017, the OSHA official conducted an inspection of a worksite on Arch Street in response to an imminent hazard report. During the inspection, the official observed numerous violations of OSHA standards including debris in passageways, electrical issues, holes in the floor, and gas tanks with broken pressure gauges. The Indictment alleges that on two separate dates in November 2017, Ren offered $1,500 cash bribes to the OSHA official in exchange for the official falsifying the inspection results and agreeing not to report the violations so that the defendant could avoid the substantial penalties that would follow.

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“OSHA inspections and standards exist for a reason: to prevent injuries and protect workers,” said U.S. Attorney Williams. “As the evidence presented at trial showed, the defendant attempted to subvert this system of protections by bribing an official to look the other way on multiple workplace safety violations. This case should serve as a warning to all employers that our Office will investigate and prosecute fully this type of corruption.”

The case was investigated by the United States Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General, Office of Investigations-Labor Racketeering and Fraud and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Mary Kay Costello.

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