A State Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit investigation, also part of the State Attorney’s Office Construction Fraud Task Force, has resulted in the arrest of defendant
William Burgess, for one count of Scheme to Defraud, a first-degree felony.
The case originated at the Collier County Clerk’s Office. The Collier Clerk Office of Inspector General found alleged fraud related to contracts and building permits. The defendant is accused of entering an agreement with the owner of a construction and management company based in Tampa, to assist him in getting jobs in Collier County.
Burgess, who is not licensed, is accused of forging the name of a licensed contractor on building permit applications, accepting jobs, and taking payment, without the contractor’s knowledge.
The State received evidence that the notary employed by Burgess notarized documents without the witnesses present, allegedly at the direction of the defendant. He is also accused of creating similar sounding companies and defrauding innocent individuals, who entered into contracts with him, and is accused of then not doing the work.
The State Attorney’s Office Construction Fraud Task Force was formed by State Attorney Amira Fox to put experienced prosecutors and investigators together to handle construction fraud cases.
Burgess turned himself into the Collier County Sheriff’s Office after a capias warrant was issued by the State Attorney’s Office.
Assistant State Attorney J.D. Miller, State Attorney’s Office Economic Crimes Unit Chief, is prosecuting the case.
Samantha Syoen – Communications Director, State Attorney’s Office