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N.Y. concrete lab chief sentenced to up to 21 years

Associated Press / May 27, 2010

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NEW YORK — A concrete-testing company president convicted of concocting results for iconic projects such as ground zero’s centerpiece skyscraper was sentenced yesterday to up to 21 years in prison in a racketeering case that spurred him to attempt suicide twice.

“No excuse makes my shortcomings disappear,’’ said Testwell Laboratories Inc. chief V. Reddy Kancharla, wearing a neck brace his lawyer said was needed because Kancharla tried to hang himself last month.

Kancharla, his firm, and company vice president Vincent Barone were convicted in February of faking concrete and steel strength test results for nearly 120 projects in and around the city, including schools, hospitals, subways, and the new Yankee Stadium.

The stadium, ground zero’s Freedom Tower, and at least 38 other buildings so far have been retested and declared safe. The city alone has spent more than $1 million on retesting and related costs, officials have said.

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