They built the first section of the High Line and replaced the Third Avenue Bridge.
Now, employees at a construction company called KSK Construction, which is behind several big projects citywide, is at the center of the developing scandal around Brianna Suggs, a campaign operative for Mayor Eric Adams.
Employees at Brooklyn-based KSK Construction refuted their involvement in the controversy, The City reported.
An FBI raid of Suggs’ home on Thursday thrust workers at Brooklyn-based KSK Construction into the center of a potential straw donor scandal.
Company owner Erden Arkan held a fundraiser in May 2021 that raised nearly $70,000 towards Adams’ mayoral campaign. Those contributions from 84 donors led the campaign to seek almost $64,000 in public matching funds, according to campaign documents.
The federal government is looking into whether Adams’ team worked with KSK and the Turkish government to insert foreign money into the campaign through straw donors who may have been listed as donors without actually having done so or being reimbursed afterwards.
KSK was spun off from Kiska Construction roughly 20 years ago, according to Construction Today, and it specializes in luxury condo projects, in addition to the Third Avenue Bridge and High Line projects.
The construction company was in the news several months ago when principal Ulgur Aydin was accused of mismanaging a luxury condo project in Brooklyn’s Carroll Gardens, according to the New York Post. Aydin allegedly hurled racist and sexist messages insulting the Japanese wife of developer Kenneth Hudes, as well as their children.
KSK’s founders are from Turkey.
Adams, who has been to Turkey a number of times, is not known to be a target of the probe. This isn’t the first time straw donors have been accused of helping his 2021 campaign, though.
Several KSK employees listed as Adams donors told The City that they either didn’t donate to the campaign or refused to speak about donations. Arkan contributed $1,500 during the fundraiser, according to records, but didn’t respond to requests for comment.
Ten donations from company employees were made during the event, totaling $12,700.
The city’s Campaign Finance Board asked the mayor’s campaign team about the donations numerous times, but never received a response.
— Holden Walter-Warner