MUNCIE, IN(NewsLink) - A Muncie contractor was arrested Monday morning on criminal charges for wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud and false statement.

Rodney Barber, owner of Barber Contracting, is the latest to be arrested in the investigation between the City of Muncie and the Muncie Sanitary District.

According to the indictment, Barber Contracting sot the city $286,389 between 2015 and 2018 when doing tree removal and demolition work for Muncie Sanitary District. Barber and other Muncie employees also conspired to fraudulently steer contracts to preferred contractors, including Barber Contracting, and defraud the Muncie Sanitary District.

Among other charges, Barber is also being accused of falsifying documents to hide the scheme from federal investigators, as well as paying kickbacks to the former superintendent of sewer and maintenance engineering. 

$95,635 deposited to Barber Contracting from the City of Muncie is being questioned by the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Barber also allegedly lied to the FBI and IRS when questioned about the case on March 28, 2018, according to the indictment.

In 2017, federal agents arrested Muncie Building Commissioner Craig Nichols after a search of his home and office that revealed fraudulent invoices and sham bidding practices. Tracy Barton and Jeffrey Burke were also arrested.

Mayor Dennis Tyler recently announced he will not be seeking a 3rd term.

For any comments about this story, contact the author at emharless@bsu.edu.