On September 14, a federal grand jury in San Francisco convicted Judy Green, of Temecula, California, a former sales representative for her role in schemes to defraud the federal E-Rate program. Ms. Green was convicted on all charges in a 22-count indictment involving fraud, collusion, aiding and abetting, and conspiracy in connection with E-Rate projects at schools in seven states – Arkansas, California, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Wisconsin.
The E-Rate program provides the funds for Internet access and telecommunications services to economically disadvantaged schools and libraries. Congress created the program in the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and it is administered by the Universal Services Administrative Company (“USAC”), a non-profit corporation that operates under the umbrella of the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”).
On December 8, 2005, Judy Green, five other individuals and six companies were charged with allegedly participating in various anticompetitive schemes. They were:
• Video Network Communications Inc. (VNCI) – Portsmouth, New Hampshire;
• Howe Electric Inc. – Fresno, California;
• Sema4 Inc. – San Juan Capistrano, California;
• Digital Connect Communications – San Juan Capistrano, California;
• Expedition Networks, Ltd. – North Hills, California;
• ADJ Consultants Inc. (ADJ) – Temecula, California;
• Judy Green – Temecula, California – Former Sales Representative for VNCI, Co-Owner of ADJ;
• Allan Green – Temecula, California – Co-Owner of ADJ;
• George Marchelos – Saratoga, California – Former Sales Representative for VNCI;
• Steven Newton – San Juan Capistrano, California – Former Vice President at Premio Computer Inc.;
• Earl Nelson – Sonora, California – Former Branch Manager for Inter-Tel Technologies Inc.; and
• William Holman – Dallas, Texas – Former Vice President of Sales for NEC-BNS.
These were charges that resulted from an ongoing federal investigation of fraud and anticompetitive conduct in the E-Rate program. The investigation was being conducted jointly by the Antitrust Division, with the assistance of the San Francisco, Los Angeles, Fresno, and Detroit offices of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.