- Associated Press - Monday, July 11, 2016

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - A former executive of a politically connected engineering firm is headed to prison for his role in a $1 million scheme to get around New Jersey’s pay-to-play laws.

William Birdsall received a nine-month sentence on Monday. The 67-year-old Manchester man had pleaded guilty in May to misconduct by a corporate official.

He was senior vice president of Birdsall Services Group before investigators found the company had disguised illegal corporate political contributions as personal contributions from firm employees. The firm would have been disqualified from public contracts if it had made contributions to campaigns and political organizations in its own name.

Birdsall also paid more than $129,000 as a forfeiture of the political contributions and a $75,000 fine.

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