West Virginia Firm Gets Paid After Kickback Scheme Charges

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) – State records show a company charged in a West Virginia highways kickback scheme continues to receive state payments on a traffic signal-repair contract.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports Bayliss and Ramey has received nearly $800,000 since December.

The company was charged last year with conspiring to commit wire fraud. It agreed to cooperate with federal prosecutors and adopt measures to prevent fraud. In return, prosecutors plan to drop charges after 18 months.

Firm owner Mark R. Whitt awaits sentencing this month on a wire fraud charge.

Acting state Purchasing Director Mike Sheets says the agency usually waits until after sentencing to ban a company from doing business in the state.

Federal prosecutors allege Whitt and three others illegally diverted about $1.5 million worth of Division of Highways projects to South Carolina engineering consulting firm Dennis Corp.

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