General Contractor And Real Estate Developer Plead Guilty In Connection With Worker Death On Construction Site In Poughkeepsie | USAO-SDNY

Johnnie Pratt

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, introduced now that ONEKEY, LLC, a New Jersey construction business, and its principal, FINBAR O’NEILL, pled responsible to willfully violating Occupational Safety and Wellbeing Administration (“OSHA”) regulations, ensuing in the loss of life of a design employee (“Victim-1”) in Poughkeepsie, New York, on or about August 3, 2017.  The defendants pled responsible right before U.S. Justice of the peace Choose Paul E. Davison, to whom the case is assigned.  The defendants are scheduled to be sentenced on May perhaps 12, 2023.

U.S. Lawyer Damian Williams reported: “Onekey, a design enterprise, and its principal, Finbar O’Neill, endangered the security of their workers by willfully disregarding restrictions and taking shortcuts to sidestep their protection obligations.  This carry out led to the tragic loss of life of a employee on a design website.  Today’s guilty plea need to provide as a reminder to all organizations that failure to comply with protection restrictions endangers their employees and unfairly cons enterprise that are adhering to the policies, and this Business office will maintain you accountable.”

According to statements and filings in federal court docket:

In 2017, ONEKEY and O’NEILL implemented a soil compaction strategy at a development website at 1 Dutchess Avenue in Poughkeepsie.  The soil compaction prepare concerned piling significant quantities of filth, identified as “surcharges,” on prime of the web sites of 3 long term structures.  An engineering firm made a plan for the use of the surcharges.  ONEKEY and O’NEILL did not observe this program.  In its place, they constructed a wall to maintain back a single of the surcharges, so workers could get started off on the buildings upcoming to it.  ONEKEY and O’NEILL did not check with with any capable man or woman to see if the wall could face up to the bodyweight to be placed on it by the surcharge. 

Even though folks had been performing upcoming to the wall, ONEKEY saved working with development machinery to include filth to the surcharge pressing up versus the wall.  The men and women operating in close proximity to the wall ended up not warned about the risks it designed.  ONEKEY and O’NEILL read from people today doing work at the internet site that the wall was not safe.  They did not deal with the wall.

On August 3, 2017, employees complained that design devices were driving on best of the surcharge, adding grime to it.  Afterwards that working day, the wall collapsed.  As it fell, Target-1 ran away from the wall, but he could not get absent in time and was killed.

*                *                *

ONEKEY, LLC, a New Jersey company, pled guilty to just one count of willful violation of OSHA rules resulting in demise.  The foregoing depend carries a optimum wonderful of $500,000.  FINBAR O’NEILL, 57, of Paramus, New Jersey, pled responsible to a single of depend of willful violation of OSHA regulations resulting in demise.  The foregoing depend carries a greatest sentence of six months in jail and a greatest wonderful of $250,000.  

The maximum prospective penalties in this case are recommended by Congress and are delivered right here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendants will be established by a choose.

Mr. Williams praised the superb do the job of OSHA and the Division of Labor, Office environment of the Inspector Basic (“DOL-OIG”).

The circumstance is being taken care of by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant U.S. Lawyers Steven J. Kochevar and Stephanie Simon are in cost of the prosecution.

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