First defendant in bid rigging scheme that paid Caltrans Employee nearly $1 million in bribes sentenced

The first defendant in a CalTrans bid-rigging scheme was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Sacramento. 

Bill R. Miller, the owner of a construction company, was sentenced to 78 months in federal prison and ordered to pay $984,699 for his role in a bid-rigging scheme with the California Department of Transportation.  Miller pleaded guilty in November 2022 for a conspiracy the ran between April 2015 and December 2019. 

“A lengthy investigation and a series of guilty pleas has led to the sentencing today for a bid-rigging and bribery conspiracy,” U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert for the Eastern District of California said. “But our work is not done. Anticompetitive practices harm taxpayers and legitimate businesses alike. My office will continue to investigate and prosecute such conduct.”

Evidence showed that along with his co-conspirator and former business associate William D. Opp, sham bids were submitted to CalTrans. Opp pleaded guilty to fraud charges in October 2022. 

Miller also pleaded guilty to paying bribes to Choon Foo “Keith” Yong, the former Caltrans contract manager who managed the contracts involved on behalf of Caltrans, which receives significant federal funding. Yong and Miller are awaiting sentencing. 

On April 11, 2022, Yong pleaded guilty for his role in the bid-rigging and bribery scheme. According to Yong’s plea agreement, Yong received bribes in the form of cash payments, wine, furniture, and remodeling services on his home valued at nearly $1 million. 

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