Procurement boss admits $400k bribery scheme

3 June 2021

A former procurement director has admitted accepting over $400,000 in kickbacks from vendors in exchange for awarding them lucrative government contracts.

Brian Bravo, 46, from Pembroke Pines, Florida, pleaded guilty in the federal district court in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday 1 June. He faces five years in jail over the bribery scheme that took place between 2008 and 2015.

Bravo worked as corporate procurement officer and director of materials management at North Broward Hospital District – commonly known as Broward Health – between 2005 and 2015.

In court Bravo admitted to “accepting approximately $427,000 in kickback payments from two vendors and a consultant for two additional vendors in exchange for awarding them Broward Health goods and services contracts”, the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida said.

“In 2015, Bravo steered kickback payments to designated bank accounts in order to conceal the illegal activity.”

In January, Bravo appeared in court to face the charges. According to the five-count indictment, Bravo engaged in the kickback scheme with vendors that provided products and services to Broward Health, “including health care products, linens, compression sleeves, and printer repairs”.  

Payments were made to Bravo “in order to secure tens of millions of dollars of business from Broward Health”, the indictment said.

Bravo is due to be sentenced on 12 August 2021.

Last month, a former logistics officer at an NGO was jailed for 40 months for paying bribes to procurement officials in exchange for sensitive information to enable bid-rigging in tenders.

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