A federal grand jury in Alexandria indicted a Richmond paving executive yesterday on conspiracy and mail fraud charges in its continuing investigation of alleged corruption in the letting of Virginia state highway contracts.
The indictment charged that rigged bids for paving work and supplies were submitted during the last five years by John V. Glazebrook Jr., an official of three companies--Richmond-based Tidewater Quarries Inc., Tidewater Crushed Stone and Asphalt Co. and an affiliated firm, E.G. Bowles Co.
Glazebrook declined to comment yesterday.
The charges bring to eight the number of indictments returned by the Alexandria grand jury since it began investigating alleged paving industry wrongdoing in the state last September. Earlier investigations by the Justice Department resulted in numerous guilty pleas and convictions in Virginia.
Yesterday's indictment charged that Glazebrook illegally conspired, beginning in 1977, to fix bids on stone purchase contracts let by the city of Richmond and suburban Henrico County. The grand jury alleged Glazebrook also submitted fixed bid proposals on a 1979 paving project totaling $2 million on Midlothian Turnpike, a major arterial road stretching west from Richmond into Chesterfield County.
In the mail fraud count, the jury charged Glazebrook caused Henrico officials to mail a copy of a 1979 contract to him after he had sworn his company's winning bid was free of collusion.
The maximum penalty for conspiracy in restraint of trade, a violation of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, is three years in prison and a $100,000 fine. Mail fraud is punishable by five years' imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.
A state highway department spokesman said yesterday the Bowles firm was struck from the state's list of eligible bidders last fall after the company pleaded no contest to a federal charge of bidding irregularities. Bowles paid a $250,000 fine in the case. Company President Eugene G. Bowles Jr. also pleaded no contest and was sentenced to 60 days in jail and a $15,000 fine.