Naval Official pleads guilty to bribery in a massive corruption case
Jan 30, 2016 07:24 AM EST
A Navy Commander alleged of diverting ships to Asian ports for a Malaysian contractor who is offering prostitution services and other gifts pleaded guilty to bribery charges this Thursday. With that, this is marked as the eight conviction in the massive scandal case.
According to Dailymail UK, Michael Misiewicz is known as one of the top ranking Naval officials to be accused in a massive scandal, which is centered on businessman Leonard Francis, also known as "Fat Leonard". "Fat Leonard" has revealed to providing an exhaustive list of gifts in exchange for classified information that helped his company Glenn Defense Marine Asia Ltd. overbill the Navy by at least $20 million.
Misiewicz allegedly accepted the theater tickets, prostitution services and other items as gifts, according to the criminal complaint. Moreover, the naval officer provided ship routes to Francis and then they moved ships, diverting them to Pacific ports with lax oversight where GDMA submitted fake tariffs and other fees, prosecutors said via Star Advertiser.
However, Misiewicz's defense lawyers claimed in a statement that Misiewicz regrets his actions from the beginning of the year 2011 up to 2012. They also added that they plan to show at his sentencing hearing that this was an "extreme departure from his otherwise distinguished and honorable 30 plus year career."
Only one defendant of the nine listed in the case is still fighting for the charges given to them. And prosecutors stated that the investigation still is ongoing and there could be more arrests.
In 2010, the naval officer was the center of attention when he made an emotional return as a U.S. Naval Commander to his native land Cambodia. The officer reported to have been rescued as a child from the violence of the Khmer Rouge and adopted by an American woman. His homecoming was extensively covered by international media outlets, as reported by ABC News.
Meanwhile, the Navy Commander now faces up to 20 years in prison if sentenced to the maximum amount for both charges. But then, he is still provided with a sentencing hearing set on April 29.