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General News

FBI Investigating Projects Related to Former Greek-American Connecticut Official

February 10, 2022

FAIRFIELD, CT – According to a February 3 report on WSHU Public Radio, “the FBI is investigating the state-financed reconstruction of the State Pier in New London, [Connecticut] and school construction grants overseen by Kostantinos ‘Kosta’ Diamantis before the administration of Governor Ned Lamont fired him from a top budget post.”

“A federal grand jury issued a subpoena for all emails, text messages and attachments involving Diamantis and a broad range of construction projects on Oct. 20, eight days before he was removed as the state’s second-highest budget official and its school construction grants director,” WSHU reported, adding that “the existence of the investigation was revealed Wednesday [Feb. 2] with the state’s release of a copy of the subpoena in response to a Freedom of Information request by CT Mirror and other news organizations. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office had no comment on the status of the investigation.”

“The revelation came on the same day the Lamont administration released a report on an outside ethics investigation into Chief State’s Attorney Richard Colangelo Jr.’s hiring of Diamantis’ daughter, Anastasia, while Colangelo lobbied him for help in securing raises,” WSHU reported, noting that “Norm Pattis, a lawyer who represents Kosta Diamantis, had no comment other than to question why federal prosecutors had yet to approach his client.”

“It’s disturbing to me to see that there’s a subpoena now three or four months old, and the feds never picked up the phone and asked to talk,” Pattis said, WSHU reported. “I called them today and said, ‘You want to talk?’ So, let’s see what they do.”

“It was not clear what prompted the federal investigation or when it began, though a former employee of a construction management company that employed Anastasia had been making allegations she had been hired to influence her father, according to the ethics investigation report,” WSHU noted, pointing out that “Stanley A. Twardy Jr., a Day Pitney partner and former U.S. attorney, was commissioned by the governor’s office to examine whether Colangelo’s hiring of Anastasia violated state ethics rules. Neither his inquiry nor his report dealt with the construction projects under review by the FBI.”

“Anastasia Diamantis was hired as an executive assistant on June 11, 2020, during her interview by Colangelo and others,” WSHU reported, adding that “no one else was interviewed for the position” and “Twardy questioned the truthfulness of Colangelo, Kosta Diamantis and Anastasia Diamantis, each of whom were interviewed for the inquiry in their account of how Anastasia met Colangelo and learned of the position.” “Their account was contradicted by others, Twardy wrote,” WSHU reported.

“Based on the available evidence, we do not find credible the largely consistent accounts of Mr. Colangelo, Anastasia, and Mr. Diamantis concerning how Mr. Colangelo and Anastasia first met. Our conclusion that those individuals lack credibility concerning the straightforward question of how Mr. Colangelo and Anastasia first met casts doubt on the integrity of the circumstances surrounding Anastasia’s hiring with the Division,” he wrote, WSHU reported, noting that “Colangelo’s office said he was reserving comment until completing his review of the report.”

“His veracity was questioned at other points in the report, including on the question of how he came to learn that Anastasia had outside employment with a school construction management company,” WSHU reported, adding that “Twardy said Colangelo denied discussing hiring Anastasia with her father, but Colangelo could not explain how Kosta Diamantis knew to forward the job descriptions for jobs in Colangelo’s division to Anastasia if the two had never discussed a job for Anastasia.”

“His report also quoted an unnamed employee in the Division of Criminal Justice describing Colangelo presenting Anastasia’s resume, apparently for an open grants administration job, and tapping on her last name,” WSHU reported, noting that Colangelo said, “Look at the name,” according to the employee.

Justice Andrew McDonald of the Connecticut Supreme Court, “who is chair of the Criminal Justice Commission empowered to hire and fire prosecutors, said the lengthy report was under review,” WSHU reported.

“Once we have reviewed it, we intend to work with the attorney general’s office to determine whether any rules, policies or statutes have been violated and what next steps, if any, the commission will take,” McDonald said, WSHU reported.

“Kosta Diamantis simultaneously was deputy secretary of the Office of Policy and Management (OPM), an unclassified political position, and the director of the Office of School Construction Grants and Review, a classified job with civil service protections,” WSHU reported, adding that “on Oct. 28, Diamantis was removed from the OPM position by the governor’s office and suspended with pay from the school construction post” and “rather than accept the suspension, Diamantis retired. At the time, the only publicly known issue about Diamantis was his daughter’s hiring.”

“Colangelo, Kosta Diamantis, Anastasia Diamantis and OPM Secretary Melissa McCaw were among the people interviewed for Twardy’s investigation,” WSHU reported, noting that “all were represented by counsel.”

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