A 48-year-old Medford man is facing allegations that he stole approximately $3 million from the construction management company where he worked and sent fraudulent bills to cover up his thefts to his company's clients, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Port Authority.
George Papadopolous faces larceny and procurement fraud charges for his alleged misdeeds when he was a vice president and branch manager of URS Corp., a company that provides planning and management for large construction projects, according to a court document outlining the case prepared by the attorney general's office.
URS contracted with Harvard to provide construction services for a science facility and a library, and it contracted with Massport to provide services for the $1 billion modernization of Logan International Airport, prosecutors said.
Papadopolous, the URS project manager for both contracts, allegedly submitted more than 250 falsified expense reports between 2004 and 2009, then sent false, inflated bills to Harvard and Massport in about the same amount that he had stolen, in an attempt to cover up his theft, prosecutors said.
Prosecutors said in the document that an analysis of Papadopoulos's bank account revealed "habitual spending well beyond his means," including $515,000 on home improvements, $111,000 on Armani clothing, and more than $1 million on personal credit card expenses.
Papadopoulos pleaded not guilty today at his arraignment in Suffolk Superior Court and was released on $25,000 bail, prosecutors said in a statement, . He was originally arrested in December and arraigned in Boston Municipal Court. A grand jury indicted him on Feb. 10, moving the case into Superior Court, prosecutors said.
Papadopoulos also allegedly stole additional money from a new employer, STV, in 2009, by falsely claiming $15,000 in relocation expenses, even though he had never moved, the court document said.
Papadopoulos faces three counts of larceny over $250 by scheme for the thefts from URS, Harvard, and Massport, and one count of larceny over $250 for his thefts from STV. He also faces a procurement fraud charge related to the false invoices he presented to Massport, prosecutors said.
A message left at Papadopoulos's home was not immediately returned. His attorney, Robert Delahunt, of the firm Mintz Levin, also did return calls.
Nancy Sterling, of Mintz Levin, said in a statement Tuesday night, As a Construction Project Manager, Mr. Papadopoulos had authority and discretion to make expenditures and seek reimbursement for them. He believes these expenses are within the scope of that discretion.
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