The city of Cleveland issued a statement Friday afternoon regarding a federal investigation surrounding city hall.
“The City policy is that all employees are entitled to due process. The City presently is evaluating how it will address this employee’s work assignments.”
Khalil Ewais, the city's chief construction inspector, is the apparent focus of the investigation. Agents from the FBI, IRS and HUD executed a late-night investigation inside city hall Wednesday.
Federal agents seized documents related to Pioneer Engineering, a company owned by Ewais. Those documents include project plans on Lorain and Carnegie avenues.
It's unclear if the city was aware Ewais owned Pioneer Engineering, or if there was a conflict. Invoices and contracts involving a company named Burton Scot were also seized by federal agents. That company's website mentions Cleveland's Opportunity Corridor asphalt installation as one of its current projects. Company officials and Cleveland Mayor FRank Jackson have yet to comment on the investigation.
As inspector, Ewais earns about $86,000 and oversees the work done on multimillion dollar construction contracts in Cleveland. He's been with the city for nearly a decade.