Companies charged in NYC building site scam; DA says cooks, stylists signed as safety managers

Authorities in New York City say two companies used cooks, hairdressers and bellhops to sign construction inspection logs.

They allegedly used the names of licensed, trained site safety managers — including one who was dead.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. and city Department of Investigation Commissioner Mark Peters unveiled the case Wednesday.

Under city law, exterior work on buildings 15 stories or taller requires daily inspections by a licensed, private site safety manager. Prosecutors say the defendants instead used relatives and other unqualified people to sign real site safety managers' names without their knowledge.

Avanti Building Consultants Inc., NYCB Engineering Group, three executives and four others were to be arraigned Wednesday. The charges include grand larceny.

The companies and the executives' lawyers didn't immediately respond to phone and email messages.