Welcome to the APBWeb.
Results 1 to 2 of 2
  1. #1
    Willowdared's Avatar
    Willowdared is offline Bendy not Breaky
    Join Date
    San Diego
    Rep Power

    Cunningham Case leads to more indictments

    By Kelly Thornton
    and Debbi Farr Baker
    1:56 p.m. February 13, 2007

    SAN DIEGO – Poway defense contractor Brent Wilkes and former high-ranking CIA official Kyle “Dusty” Foggo, childhood friends from San Diego who got entangled in the Randy “Duke” Cunningham corruption scandal, were indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury.

    U.S. Attorney Carol Lam announced the indictments at an afternoon press conference, calling the charges against the two men “breathtaking in scope.”

    The jury returned 11 counts against Foggo and Wilkes that include conspiracy, wire fraud, conflict of interest and money laundering. It charges Foggo with using his seniority and influence within the CIA to direct the awarding of contracts to Wilkes, his lifelong friend.

    A second indictment, which included 26 counts, names Wilkes and New York-based mortgage banker John T. Michael, who co-owned a mortgage company that provided loans to Cunningham. It charges Wilkes with conspiracy, wire fraud, bribery of a public official and money laundering.

    The investigation began after a June 12, 2005, report by Copley News Service reporter Marcus Stern that detailed Cunningham's sale of his Del Mar Heights home to a defense contractor for hundred of thousand of dollars more than it was worth.

    Within nine months of that first report of corruption, Cunningham was convicted and jailed.

    Court documents allege that Wilkes provided more than $700,000 to Cunningham in exchange for the former congressman corruptly influencing the appropriation of funds and the execution of government contracts to benefit Wilkes' company, Poway-based ADCS Inc.

    Associated Press
    United States' Attorney Carol Lam announces a new round of indictments stemming from corruption of convicted U.S. Congressman Randall "Duke" Cunningham in San Diego, Tuesday. Lam is flanked by FBI agent Stewart Roberts
    Michael, 35, is charged with a single charge of obstructing justice. He is accused of trying to influence and impede a federal grand jury investigation by providing misleading and false testimony regarding Wilkes' role in paying off the $500,000 second mortgage on Cunningham's Rancho Santa Fe home.

    Michael is the nephew of the wife of Thomas Kontogiannis, a Long Island developer who sought Cunningham's help in seeking a presidential pardon for a conviction in a New York schools bribery scandal. Ultimately, Kontogiannis decided not to pursue the pardon.

    Kontogiannis was named a co-conspirator in the Cunningham case and, according to court records, he gave the former congressman $328,000, most of it through an overpayment for a boat. He has not been charged.
    The indictment alleges that Wilkes paid bribes to Cunningham in the form of cash, checks, lavish meals, trips, lodging, corporate jet travel, boats and prostitution.

    The indictment says that on two occasions Wilkes provided prostitutes for himself and the congressman on two consecutive evenings on a lavish Hawaiian trip.

    Court documents also allege that Foggo and Wilkes, both 52, schemed to conceal Foggo's conflict of interest and corrupt intent by using shell companies and straw men, and laundered the proceeds of their fraud.

    Foggo accepted tens of thousands of dollars in meals, gifts and vacations, and a standing offer of a senior executive position with ADCS. Foggo disclosed none of this to the CIA, according to the indictment.

    Prosecutors are asking for forfeiture of $12 million from Wilkes and Michael.

    “These two indictments describe patterns of self-dealing and corruption that spanned years and reached deep into our country's systems of procurement in the defense industry,” Lam said.

    “The allegations in the indictments describe undisclosed personal and financial relationships between government officials and individuals seeking lucrative defense contracts. These personal and financial relationships led to benefits totalling thousands, even millions of dollars, being bestowed on government officials and millions of dollars in defense contracts flowing back in the other direction.”

    Kenneth J. Hines, special agent in charge of IRS' Criminal Investigation unit, said Wilkes and Foggo went to great lengths to circumvent the law to personally enrich themselves and that this kind of behavior will not be tolerated.

    “There's no doubt that the victims in the case truly are the American taxpayer and the money that is lost with this deceptive practice,” he said.

    Stewart Roberts, assistant special agent in charge of the FBI's San Diego office, said that “although the perpetrators of these types of crimes involved in corruption may believe that their self dealing is a victimless event, we know that these types of crimes do have victims.”

    “The American public has a right to expect that their public officials and the contractors they enlist to do the government's work, will be acting with the best interest of the public in mind and not just their best interest in mind,” Roberts said.

    Wilkes and Foggo are expected to surrender at an arraignment in federal court Wednesday.

    Foggo quit his post as No. 3 at the CIA after his office was raided by San Diego-based federal agents.

    Wilkes was a big contributor to Republican lawmakers who developed a series of businesses that specialized in landing federal contracts, with ADCS as his flagship.

    ADCS received more than $100 million in government contracts between 1995 and 2005, partly with the help of Cunningham, who sat on the influential House Appropriations Committee.

    Wilkes and Foggo have been friends for years, back to when they both attended Hilltop High School in Chula Vista and San Diego State University.

    Cunningham, a Republican who represented much of San Diego's North County in Congress for 15 years, pleaded guilty to conspiracy and tax evasion charges in November 2005 and was sentenced last March to eight years and four months in federal prison.

    He is now in a minimum-security work camp in Tucson.

    As part of his criminal case, Cunningham admitted accepting more than $2.4 million in bribes and, in exchange, routing contracts worth millions of contracts to businesses that were controlled by Wilkes and another businessman, Mitchell Wade.

    Wade once worked for Wilkes, then became his business rival with a company that obtained more than $100 million in contracts while Wade was plying Cunningham with cash, trips and fine furniture, according to court records.

    Wade has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and is awaiting his sentencing.
    Molly Weasley makes Chuck Norris eat his vegetables.

    Do not puff, shade, skew, tailor, firm up, stretch, massage,
    or otherwise distort statements of fact.
    FBI Special Agent Coleen Rowley

  2. #2
    Willowdared's Avatar
    Willowdared is offline Bendy not Breaky
    Join Date
    San Diego
    Rep Power
    Isn't interesting?

    U.S. Attorney Carol Lam has been asked to resign, as she has supposedly not been aggressive prosecuting immigration cases.

    I guess they want her to send Federal agents to prison, like her counterpart in Texas - U.S. Attorney Johnny Sutton?
    Molly Weasley makes Chuck Norris eat his vegetables.

    Do not puff, shade, skew, tailor, firm up, stretch, massage,
    or otherwise distort statements of fact.
    FBI Special Agent Coleen Rowley



Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-18-07, 02:15 AM
  2. A little interesting case...
    By conalabu in forum In the News
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 05-31-07, 07:00 PM
  3. Orleans DA drops murder case
    By dla4079 in forum In the News
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 02-19-07, 02:28 AM
  4. DA Nifong Wants Out of Duke "Rape" Case
    By Jackalope in forum In the News
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-12-07, 10:35 PM

Tags for this Thread


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts