Monday 26 September 2016

US Navy captain jailed after leaking secrets in exchange for prostitutes

US Navy captain traded secrets for prostitutes and lavish gifts in Malaysia

Published 26/03/2016 | 12:18

Captain Daniel Dusek pled guilty in January 2015 to conspiracy to commit bribery Photo: US Navy/Flcikr
Captain Daniel Dusek pled guilty in January 2015 to conspiracy to commit bribery Photo: US Navy/Flcikr

A TOP US navy officer caught in a $30 million bribery scandal has been sentenced to 46 months in prison, bringing to a close the case against the highest-ranking officer in the fraud scheme.

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Captain Daniel Dusek, 49, pleaded guilty last year to a charge of conspiracy to commit bribery after admitting he accepted services from prostitutes, luxury hotel stays, alcohol and other gifts in exchange for giving classified information to the Singapore-based company Glenn Defense Marine Asia.

"It's truly unimaginable to the court that someone in your position with the United States Navy would sell out based on what was provided to you - hotel rooms, entertainment and the services of prostitutes," US District Judge Janis Sammartino said during the sentencing in San Diego, California.

Dusek, 49, who pleaded guilty in January 2015 to conspiracy to commit bribery, was among several current and former naval officers charged in the scandal that involved tens of millions of dollars in bribes. At one point Dusek served as deputy director of operations for the US 7th Fleet.

At the heart of the bribery network was Leonard Francis, a 51-year-old Malaysian defence contractor known as "Fat Leonard" because of his ample size.

Over the course of a decade, Francis conspired to bribe senior officers and enlist their help in making tens of millions of dollars in fraudulent claims to the US Navy.

His bribes for the Americans reads like a wish list from a Harrods catalogue: "Designer handbags and leather goods, watches, fountain pens, fine wine, Champagne, Scotch, Kobe beef, Spanish suckling pigs, designer furniture, Cuban cigars, consumer electronics, ornamental swords, and hand-made ship models".

Court documents give forensically-detailed timelines of the quid pro quo between Francis and the US officers. Beginning in July 2010, Francis started providing prostitutes and luxury hotel stays to Dusek, the deputy director of operations for the US 7th fleet, which is based in the Pacific.

On July 13 2010, Cpt Dusek gave Francis's company classified files showing the scheduled movements of US ships. Francis then gave Dusek a hotel room in the Shangri-La in the Philippines "and the services of two prostitutes while there".

After the Philippines stay, Cpt Dusek used his influence to get the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln to dock in a Malaysian port run by Francis. Francis's company billed the Navy more than $1.5m (€1.3m) for services during the carrier's four-day stay.

Reuters

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