Jail for corrupt US defence buyer

4 October 2009

05 October 2009 | Jake Kanter

A former reserve major in the US army has been sentenced to almost six years in prison after pleading guilty to accepting bribes.

Theresa Jeanne Baker was sentenced to serve 70 months in jail and fined $825,000 (£516,000) by a judge in Oklahoma last week. She pleaded guilty to the corruption charges in December 2008.

Court documents showed Baker accepted bribes and "other items" from a supplier in exchange for "sensitive information" and awarding defence contracts in Iraq. She also cancelled telecoms contracts and re-awarded them to another vendor in exchange for a cut of the deals.

The Department of Justice said the proceedings were an example of its commitment to protect US taxpayers from procurement fraud through the National Procurement Fraud Task Force.

Elsewhere, an annual study by fraud watchdog Transparency International found corruption was costing the global economy billions and obstructing financial recovery. It said corruption, including bribery and price-fixing cartels, undermined fair competition and stifled world finances (Web news, 24 September).

SMoct2009

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