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Pittsburgh contractor charged with bribery

Published by Tim McNulty on .

A contractor for Pittsburgh city government who is friends with Pittsburgh Police Chief Nate Harper is being charged with bribery. Rich Lord has the story:

The founder of several local companies has been charged with bribery, conspiracy and mail fraud and is due to appear in federal court at 1:45 p.m. today.

Arthur J. Bedway Jr., 63, of Robinson, created the firm Alpha Outfitters, which won a city contract in 2007 to install, service and maintain the computers in City of Pittsburgh police cars. Police Chief Nate Harper, who had been a friend of Mr. Bedway, avoided any involvement in the contracting process.

According to the charges against Mr. Bedway, he falsely portrayed Alpha Outfitters as a woman-owned business. He then conspired with a city employee, Christine Kebr, to win the contract, and paid her for assistance, in violation of laws against bribing an agent of an organization receiving federal funds.

The indictment, not yet available, includes seven counts.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Cessar is handling the prosecution.

The FBI arrested Mr. Bedway earlier this week. His initial court appearance will be before U.S. Magistrate Judge Maureen Kelly.

Mr. Bedway's attorney, Martin Dietz, could not be reached for comment Thursday or this morning.

Mr. Bedway has chaired Carnegie-based Victory Security, a large guard firm he founded that has been credited with reducing crime in several housing developments and which employed Chief Harper's wife for a time.

The Post-Gazette chronicled his career here.

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