The highest ranking Navy official involved in the service’s embarrassing bribery scandal has been sentenced to 46 months in prison.
Navy Capt. Daniel Dusek, who in January 2015 pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery, will also pay a $70,000 fine and $30,000 in restitution to the Navy in the ruling from San Diego-based District Judge Janis Sammartino.
Dusek admitted that in return for the services of prostitutes, luxury travel, meals and entertainment in 2010, he provided classified information on the Navy’s Yokosuka, Japan-based Seventh Fleet shipping schedules to the Singapore-based defense contractor Glenn Defense Marine Asia, which was run by Leonard Glenn Francis.
Nicknamed “Fat Leonard,” the CEO—whose own sentencing after he switched his plea to guilty is still to come—wrote in an email that Dusek “is a golden asset to drive the big decks (aircraft carriers) into our fat revenue GDMA ports,” according to a Justice Department press release.
Dusek’s plea agreement said on dozens of occasions he hand-delivered Navy ship schedules to the GDMA office in Japan or emailed them directly to Francis or a GDMA employee, always taking steps to avoid detection by law enforcement or Navy personnel.
“Soon after, Francis asked Dusek to exercise his influence on GDMA’s behalf by steering the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and its associated strike group to Port Klang, Malaysia – a port terminal owned by Francis,” the release said.
Dusek replied in a series of emails to GDMA in late August 2010 that he would make it happen. “Good discussion with N00 (Admiral) today and convince[d] him that [Port Klang] is the better choice,” Dusek wrote to Francis on Aug. 21, 2010. Three days later, Dusek reported to Francis that he had “everyone in agreement” that the next Carrier Strike Group through the area of responsibility will stop at the Malaysian port on Oct. 8-12. That port visit cost the United States about $1.6 million, Justice said.
“As a Navy officer, Captain Dusek took an oath to bear true faith and allegiance to the United States,” said Assistant Attorney General Leslie Caldwell. “Instead, he chose self-interest, greed and prurience. And when he learned of the investigation [in September 2013], Captain Dusek deleted his email accounts in an attempt to shield his crimes from law enforcement.”
The sentence was announced Friday by Caldwell of the Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney Laura E. Duffy of the Southern District of California; Director James B. Burch of the Defense Department’s Defense Criminal Investigative Service; Andrew Traver, director of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service; and Anita Bales, director of Defense Contract Audit Agency.
“This outcome again sends the message that corruption will be vigorously investigated and prosecuted,” Burch said. “This is an unfortunate example of dishonorable naval officers who recklessly risked the safety of our troops by trading classified information for cash, extravagant gifts and prostitutes. This investigation should serve as a warning that those who compromise the integrity of the United States will face their day of reckoning.”
So far, 10 individuals have been charged in connection with this scheme; of those, nine have pleaded guilty. Others await sentencing.