Oregon Department of Justice

Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum

Oregon Department of Justice - Attorney General Ellen F. Rosenblum
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AG SUES ROSS BROS. & CO FOR RACKETEERING

February 7, 2008

Attorney General Hardy Myers today filed a lawsuit in Malheur County Circuit Court alleging that the principals in an Oregon company engaged in a pattern of racketeering activity by which they attempted to defraud the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) of more than $1,126,000. The complaint alleges that Steven M. Ross, Greg Ross, and Jeff Howell, principals in Ross Bros. & Company, Inc., of Brooks, Oregon, violated Oregon's civil Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act by submitting false documents to ODOT, obtaining or attempting to obtain public funds by submitting false claims to ODOT, and obstructing governmental administration.

The Malheur County Circuit Court has scheduled a hearing for March 19- 20, 2008 on Myers' motion for preliminary injunction. That motion seeks to bar defendants and their company from bidding on or obtaining any government contracts and from working as a subcontractor or supplier, pending further order of the court. The motion also asks the court to preliminarily enjoin the defendants and their company from encumbering, disposing of, or hiding property they obtained through the pattern of racketeering activity alleged in the complaint.

ODOT awarded a contract to Ross Bros. & Company, Inc. in 2001 to build a new bridge over a railroad in Ontario, Oregon, as part of the Oregon Transportation Investment Act. The company sued the state after ODOT rejected questionable cost overrun claims. During the investigation and defense of that lawsuit, ODOT and the Oregon Department of Justice discovered the facts forming the basis of the racketeering claims filed today.

Ross Bros. & Company, Inc. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ross Bros. Construction Co., Inc., with offices in Brooks, Oregon.

Contact:

Stephanie Soden, (503) 378-6002
Pete Shepherd, DOJ, 503-378-6002, pete.shepherd@state.or.us |
David Thompson, ODOT, 503-731-8263, 503-986-4180, 503-860-8021, David.h.thompson@state.or.us |
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