Four former National Grid employees have pleaded guilty to accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks in exchange for help in awarding lucrative utility contracts, federal prosecutors said.

Two of the four, Patrick McCrann, 57, of Selden, and Richard Zavada, 65, of Hicksville, entered their pleas in federal court in Brooklyn Monday. Two others, Ricardo Garcia, 48, of Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, and Jevan Seepaul, 36, of Rockville Centre, previously pleaded guilty in the same case, prosecutors said.

The case against a fifth defendant in the case, Devraj Balbir, remains pending, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office said. Balbir's attorney, Jeff Alan Chabrowe, reached on Monday, said, "I'm not going to talk to you about it."

Each of the men faces a maximum of five years in prison, a $500,000 fine and mandatory restitution and forfeiture, prosecutors said.

In March, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District filed a criminal information against the five former employees, alleging they accepted cash, home landscaping work, tuition payments and one or more RVs in exchange for facilitating big contracts to two third-party companies to maintain National Grid maintenance yards and other facilities throughout Long Island. PSEG Long Island also uses the yards, and has paid the contractor millions in annual snow-removal costs, Newsday had reported. Federal agents recovered $300,000 in cash from a safety deposit box held by Zavada, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors had alleged the men helped the contractor secure contracts from National Grid during a competitive bidding process by providing nonpublic information about the bids and favorable reviews about the contractor.

In August, National Grid, in a statement, noted that "to our knowledge the companies" that conducted the outside contracting work for National Grid "have not been made public, however, we can confirm that we no longer do business with East End Group," a maintenance and construction firm that until last month had listed National Grid and PSEG among its clients. A lawyer for East End Group has declined to comment.

"The defendants have admitted accepting thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks for their own enrichment and to subverting the no-bid process for awarding contracts," Acting U.S. Attorney Jacquelyn M. Kasulis said in a statement. "The office will remain vigilant in prosecuting criminals who seek to enrich themselves at the expense of taxpayers and consumers."

Meanwhile, the state Department of Public Service, PSEG and LIPA have been conducting their own reviews of National Grid's practices and utility payments to the contractor. In a state filing in the case in August, National Grid said it had begun "extensive work to assess where National Grid may need to improve its controls, procedures, and personnel," and has hired independent consultants and outside lawyers "to complete a full review of National Grid’s internal controls and procedures bearing on procurement compliance and ethics in order to identify any deficiencies and opportunities for enhancements."

National Grid said it "intends" to share the results of the probes with DPS staff, but did not say if it would be publicly released.

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