The city’s chief crane inspector was arrested on Friday and charged with taking bribes to allow cranes to pass inspection, the authorities said. He was also accused of taking money from a crane company that sought to ensure that its employees would pass the required licensing exam.
Top City Crane Inspector Accused of Taking Bribes
The man, James Delayo, 60, the acting chief inspector for the Cranes and Derricks Unit at the city’s Department of Buildings, oversaw the issuing of city licenses for crane operators. The case against him, announced by the Manhattan district attorney’s office and the city’s Department of Investigation, was filed just a week after the city’s second fatal crane collapse in less than three months.
Officials said the accusations against Mr. Delayo bore no direct relation to the accident last week at 91st Street and First Avenue, where two workers died, or the crane accident on East 51st Street that left seven dead in March.
But the case was another blemish on a Buildings Department that has been reeling from construction deaths and inspection lapses this year, and for which deadly crane accidents are part of a lingering series of problems.
From the NY Post:
One of the city's top crane inspectors pocketed thousands of dollars in bribes from a construction firm while selling copies of the crane-operator exam, authorities charged yesterday.
James Delayo, assistant chief inspector for cranes, allegedly took cash for eight years to falsify reports claiming that cranes were inspected and operators properly licensed, the Department of Investigation said.
This blatant corruption by one of the Buildings Department's most senior men comes as questions swirl around the agency's ability to safely manage the city's building boom.
Here's the mayor's response.