ST. TAMMANY PARISH, La. – A man working for a demolition contractor was arrested for stealing approximately $750,000 worth of scrap materials from the old twin spans, according to the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office.
Jason Hedges, 34, of Metairie, worked for NASDI, LLC, the company given the job of removing the old twin spans and recycling or selling for scrap some of the materials after the bridge was demolished.
Company officials became concerned when they noticed a suspicious lack of proper record-keeping with the job and they alerted authorities, according to the STPSO.
Investigators discovered that Hedges scheme involved the delivery of a portion of the metal scrap to unsanctioned recycling and scarp firms in exchange for cash payments.
About $750,000 worth of scrap was diverted to other firms, with over $300,000 in cash payment traced to Hedges, investigators estimated based on information provided by NASDI.
The cash payments began in November 2011 and lasted until May 2012, and it is undetermined if Hedges was working alone.
On Tuesday, he was arrested on one count of theft over $1,500. It carries a maximum penalty of up to 10 years imprisonment at hard labor and a fine of up to $3,000. He was released the same day on a $50,000 bond.