A Manhattan jury has heard opening statements in the trial of the Canadian owner of a company that won $1 billion in contracts to provide steel to build the World Trade Center's tallest building.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kan Nawaday told jurors Tuesday that Larry Davis of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada, defrauded a program meant to benefit businesses owned by minorities and women. Defense lawyers said he is not guilty.

The 65-year-old Davis has been free on bail since his arrest two years ago on wire fraud and conspiracy charges. His company, DCM Erectors Inc., is also on trial.

Prosecutors say Davis committed fraud by claiming work was going to minority and women-owned businesses when it was not.

Lawyers for Davis and his company said he hid nothing and followed the law.