Lincoln Hall Contractor Pleads Guilty to Mail Fraud

March 28, 2013

The former head of a Peoria-area construction firm was ordered to pay $1.5 million in restitution after pleading guilty to fraud in connection with two public university projects, including the University of illinois’ Lincoln Hall.

The office says the case against Thomas J. Williams in Sangamon County Circuit Court was sealed until Wednesday, the day of his plea.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office said the conviction is the result of an investigation by the Attorney General's Public Integrity Bureau, which Madigan created to uncover fraud, abuse, and waste of government resources.

"Williams Brothers used this subcontractor as a front to win significant state construction contracts," Madigan said in a press release.  "The company's illegal acts denied legitimate minority-owned businesses from securing public contracts and defrauded taxpayers," she said.

The 81-year old Williams admitted that Williams Brothers Construction of Peoria Heights falsely told the Illinois Capital Development Board that a minority-owned subcontractor would work on the construction projects.

The projects at the University of Illinois and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville were worth about $60 million to Williams' company.

Story source: AP