SALES EXEC PLEADS GUILTY IN PRINT AD SCANDAL

Steven Briggin Admits to One Count Bid-Rigging, Conspiracy

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NEW YORK (AdAge.com) -- A sales representative for a Manhattan print shop pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of bid-rigging and conspiring to pay kickbacks in exchange for business.

Steven Briggin, vice president

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of sales for Darbert Offset Corp., participated in a scheme to rig bids and to create the impression of competition for commercial printing contracts awarded by Manhattan advertising agency Impact Communications, according to papers filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York.

$150,000 in kickbacks
Mr. Briggin, the papers say, paid kickbacks to Impact's purchasing agent in the amount of at least $150,000. He pleaded guilty to one count of rigging bids and one count of engaging in a conspiracy to commit mail fraud.

Last month Darbert Offset Corp. owner Bertram Cohen pled guilty to participating in the kickback scheme and to a related tax charge.

Mr. Briggin is the eighth executive to plead guilty in the case.

The charges against Briggin arise out of an ongoing probe by federal authorities into bid rigging, commercial bribery and tax-related offenses in the marketing communications industry.

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