February 23, 2016 | Number of The Day
Number of years that CEO of Birdsall Services Group is likely to serve in prison

The Birdsall Services Group was a well-known New Jersey architectural and engineering firm for many years, until it was caught in 2013 evading the state’s pay-to-play laws. In 2013, the firm pleaded guilty to first-degree money laundering and second degree making false representations for government contracts. The firm, which is now defunct, has paid two $500,000 penalties to the state, one for public corruption and another for money laundering and profiteering.

Howard Birdsall, 72, of Brielle and CEO of the Birdsall Services Group, pleaded guilty to the charges and now the state is recommending he serve four years in prison. He also must pay a $49,808 fine.

Birdsall has been found guilty of a criminal scheme in which at least $1 million in political contributions were made through employees of the firm, and later reimbursed through Birdsall. Six other executives have also been charged but most are awaiting sentencing. Birdsall will be sentenced in April.