On January 27, 1994, Richard Friedberg, of Villanova, Pennsylvania,
was issued a "Notice of Proposed Governmentwide Debarment from
Federal Nonprocurement Transactions" pursuant to 34 C.F.R. §
85.312. The notice informed him that the proposed debarment was
based upon his conviction by the United States District Court for
the Eastern District of Pennsylvania of two income tax offenses -
filing false income tax returns and aiding and abetting in the
making of false income tax returns, in violation of 26 U.S.C. §§
7201, 7206(2) and 18 U.S.C. § 1001 and 2. He was also informed
that he had the right to submit information and argument in
opposition to the proposed debarment.
On February 24, 1994, Mr. Friedberg submitted a letter, with
attachments, in which he argued, in effect, that debarment should
be denied because he is no longer involved in the Title IV Program.
On March 9, 1994, Counsel for the Notice Official submitted a Response in which she stated that the "voluntary suspension" of Mr. Friedberg is insufficient to fully protect the federal interest, and it does not act to mitigate the seriousness of the offenses of which he was convicted.
First, I find that there is no dispute as to material facts. Next,
pursuant to 34 C.F.R. § 85.300, I must consider the seriousness of
the person's acts or omissions and any mitigating factors in
determining whether to debar an individual, recognizing that it is
the policy of the Federal Government to conduct business only with
responsible persons. In light of the foregoing, I find that
debarment is warranted based on Mr. Friedberg's conviction of
offenses directly connected to his trustworthiness to administer
the Federal student financial assistance programs and that these
offenses directly and adversely relate to whether he is a
responsible person for purposes of administering any Federal funds.
Under 34 C.F.R. § 85.320, the period of debarment is to be
commensurate with the seriousness of the cause(s) of debarment,
generally not to exceed three years. Based on the facts and
circumstances herein, I have determined that the period of
debarment in this case will be three years.
I order that Richard Friedberg be DEBARRED from initiating,
conducting, or otherwise participating in any covered transaction
under the nonprocurement programs and activities of any Federal
agency. As a result, he is not eligible to receive Federal
financial and nonfinancial assistance or benefits from any Federal
agency under nonprocurement programs and activities. Also, he may
not act as a principal, as defined in 34 C.F.R. § 85.105(p), on
behalf of any person in connection with any covered transaction.
This debarment is effective for all covered transactions unless an
agency head or authorized designee grants an exception for a
particular transaction in accordance with 34 C.F.R. § 85.215.
ERNEST C. CANELLOS,
Deciding Debarment and
Dated: April 18, 1994