Sunday, January 30, 2011

Army Contracting Bribery Scandal Results in Prison Term

$200,000 in Bribes:  Over the course of four years as a military contracting officer deployed overseas in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Kuwait, Army Major Roderick D. Sanchez accepted more than $200,000 in bribes from foreign companies (cash and other items), in exchange for Sanchez steering contracts to those firms.  Sanchez was in a position to review bids and make award recommendations.

5 Years in Prison:  On January 19, 2011, some two and a half months after he pled guilty to one count of bribery, Sanchez was sentenced to five years in prison in the bribery scandal.  In addition, he will serve three years of supervised release when his prison term ends.  He was also ordered to pay a $15,000 fine and forfeit Rolex watches, real estate, and other property he bought with the bribery money.

The Lure of Money:  It's tragic that the lure of money can corrupt public contracting officials into accepting bribes, resulting in prison time and severe damage to the reputation of government.

Independent Oversight?  Does your public agency have sufficient internal controls, independent oversight, and checks and balances in place to help prevent such abuses?  It's worth examining your practices and developing systems and structures that make it easier for contracting officials to do the right thing, and harder to do the wrong thing.
Mike Purdy's Public Contracting Blog 
© 2011 by Michael E. Purdy Associates, LLC

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