June, 2002


"On The Side"

Inventory accounting and control problems are almost a given in the construction industry. Everything from copper wire to construction vehicles are at least occasionally exposed at job sites and vulnerable to everything from simple pilfering to outright theft.

Employees Stealing:

Your Time
Your Resources,
Your Equipment
And Your Workers

For Personal Profit.

But the problem isn't confined to independent thieves acting on an opportunity of the moment. It often can be a company's own employees, even supervisors, who dip into the company's assets for their own personal profit.

Case Study-1:

A small group of employees working at various job sites squirrels away plumbing fixtures during the day - then they return after hours to haul away the goods for resale. As long as they don't get too greedy, the scam can continue from one job site to another over many months.

Case Study-2:

A construction supervisor takes on jobs for himself and then fulfills his private contracts by using company time, equipment, and even other employees willing to join his little conspiracy.

Since the supervisor is in a position to control information about progress at official company job sites, the employer may never know that equipment isn't where it's supposed to be or that employees aren't working where they're supposed to be working.

Case Study-3:

An officer of a construction company sets up his own corporation, which he then uses in direct competition with the company to which he has a fiduciary responsibility.

This type of conduct creates an official paper trail, but, unless so real suspicion arises, the trail may never be detected and followed.

The Best Defense Is A Good Offense

All of these and other types of construction industry scams have a vulnerability in common – they go on in plain sight.

That vulnerability means that my investigative staff often has a clear opportunity to gather the visual and documentary evidence needed by construction companies in order to drop the hammer on the culprits.

The information we gather even may constitute sufficient grounds for the filing of criminal charges.

Gathering The Evidence

Dealer/Resellers of construction materials often don't pay by check or maintain detailed records, except for fairly large purchases; but, in our experience, they do recall and can identify repeat sellers of construction materials.

That's a weakness in any construction-related scam that we can exploit. Testimonial evidence can be useful, but surveillance is the ultimate key to exposing the perpetrators and the scope of their illegal activities on and off the job.

On Location/Part-1:

We can set up surveillance at construction locations, storage locations for supplies, and business offices where inventory is missing or equipment may be misappropriated.

Our surveillance would include photographic and videotape evidence of unauthorized activities at these locations, including persons who may be linked to those activities.

In our experience, the likely source of theft is from job sites, where materials and fixtures may be stored but not be well secured because of the circumstances at the site.

Still, even where security is stiff, it is not unheard of for a supposedly trusted employee with key access to storage areas to be a facilitator for, even a participant in, thefts from job sites.

Most, if not all, of this type of activity will occur after hours, primarily after dark, when property will be removed to another location… anything from a commercial storage facility to a participant's garage.

One of our surveillance objectives is to make a sustaining record of the person or persons involved, the means by which a theft occurs, the methods used to transport stolen property, and the storage destination, if any, as well as to identify any reseller to whom the goods are offered.

On Location/Part-2:

The key in any construction related theft is the principal person involved. We can establish surveillance beginning at a suspect's residence, following the suspect throughout the day to identify contacts, locations, any activity that may verify the trail of misconduct, including:

  • Illicit job sites
  • Misappropriated tools supplies, and equipment
  • Other participants

As indicated earlier, virtually all types of construction industry scams have a vulnerability in common – in part or in whole, they go on in plain sight.

Our job, as investigators, is to use every tool at our disposal on your behalf to turn that vulnerability against those who would violate your trust for their own personal profit.

You deserve this best defense.
They deserve the consequences.

Discreet, Thorough,
Accurate & Creative

  • Former Investigator for the Denver and Jefferson District Attorney's Offices

  • Police misconduct and related investigations for Central City, Breckenridge, Fowler, and Fort Lupton. And Risk Assessment investigations for Denver.

  • The only private investigative agency in Colorado to be hired by the Denver Election Commission to investigate allegations of campaign fraud and kickbacks.

  • Broad knowledge of criminal & civil law, insurance regulations, and common sense acquired through 25 years of investigative experience.

  • One of the few investigative firms in Colorado to carry $1 million in liability insurance.

  • More than 22,000 civil and criminal cases investigated.

  • Associate Member: Colorado and Denver Bar Associations.

  • Member:
    • World Association of Detectives
    • World Investigators Network
    • Metropolitan Law Enforcement Agency
    • Intelnet
    • Professional Private Investigators Association of Colorado
    • National Council of Investigation and Security Services
    • California Association of Legal Investigators
    • Florida Association of Legal Investigators

  • Associate Member, Colorado and Denver Bar Associations.

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1649 Downing Street, Denver, CO 80218-1528
Office: 303/296-2200 | www.denverpi.com e-mail: rick@denverpi.com