Tuesday, July 29, BISD contract electrician Calvin Walker was indicted and arrested for perpetrating fraud against the Beaumont Independent School District and the city of Port Arthur, Jefferson County District Attorney Cory Crenshaw says.
The latest charges against Walker stem from his “unique” accounting method of billing clients like BISD for materials allegedly used on work orders without providing a receipt when submitting invoices for reimbursement. Walker also claims a 10 percent mark-up of the materials, again without a receipt to prove purchase of those materials.
Walker’s billing irregularities were highlighted in 2012 when the U.S. Attorney’s Office brought similar charges against the contract electrician. A jury was deadlocked on a verdict to convict Walker for similar allegations to those recently revealed, with Walker ultimately taking a plea deal on those charges and forfeiting more than $2 million in cash and assets.
According to a press release from the District Attorney's Office, the former electrical contractor for the Beaumont Independent School District and the City of Port Arthur has been indicted for fraudulent billing practices and money laundering, announced Criminal District Attorney Cory Crenshaw today.
Calvin Walker, 53, of Beaumont, Texas, was indicted on four felony charges of Securing Execution of a Document by Deception and two felony charges of Money Laundering. According to the indictments, from December 23, 2008, through September 10, 2009, Walker, who owns and manages an electrical contractor company, submitted fraudulent invoices to both BISD and the City of Port Arthur. The fraudulent invoices resulted in Walker being compensated for labor, materials, and other expenses which were never incurred concerning his work as a contractor on various projects including temporary campuses at BISD’s South Park and Regina Howell schools, a softball field at Ozen, and Port Arthur parks.
If convicted, Walker faces up to life in prison on each charge due to the amount of fraud being in excess of $200,000. Criminal District Attorney Cory Crenshaw will pursue full restitution to ensure that all taxpayer funds are repaid.
The investigation leading to the charges was conducted by agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and investigators with the Criminal District Attorney’s Office with the assistance of the Beaumont Police Department. Assistant Criminal District Attorney Luke Nichols is prosecuting the case.
A grand jury indictment is not evidence of guilt and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.