Former Detroit-Based Technology Company CEO Indicted for Multi-Year Bribery Scheme
The former chief executive officer of FutureNet Group Inc., a Detroit-based information technology company, was indicted yesterday for his role in orchestrating a scheme to bribe an official from the City of Detroit to obtain benefits for FutureNet, announced Acting Assistant Attorney General John P. Cronan of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Parimal D. Mehta, 54, of Northville, Michigan, is charged in an 11-count indictment filed in the Eastern District of Michigan with five counts of honest services mail and wire fraud, one count of federal program bribery, and five counts of unlawfully using interstate facilities to commit bribery under Michigan law.
According to the indictment, from 2009 through August 2016, Mehta made multiple cash payments to Charles L. Dodd, the former Director of Detroit’s Office of Departmental Technology Services, including two cash bribes hand-delivered by Mehta to Dodd in the restrooms of Detroit-area restaurants in 2016. Mehta is also alleged to have employed Dodd’s family members at FutureNet and its subsidiaries. Dodd previously pleaded guilty to bribery on Sept. 27, 2016.
The indictment alleges that Mehta paid these bribes to Dodd in exchange for preferential treatment for his company, FutureNet, which received approximately $7.5 million from Detroit in 2015 and 2016. According to the indictment, Mehta and FutureNet benefitted from Dodd’s influence over the administration of city contracts, expenditures under those contracts, and the hiring and selection of contract personnel. The indictment further alleges that Mehta obtained confidential information about Detroit’s internal budgets for specific technology projects.
The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
The case is being investigated by the FBI’s Detroit Division. Trial Attorneys Robert J. Heberle and James I. Pearce of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section are prosecuting the case.