YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — A former U.S. Forces Korea employee could face jail time after pleading guilty to charges of fraud and bribery, the U.S. Department of Justice said.
Percy Lee Powers, 49, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to defraud the U.S. government and one count of bribery, Justice Department officials said. Powers admitted to defrauding the Army of more than $55,000 and taking more than $30,000 in bribes, said Asst. Attorney General Christopher A. Wray of Justice’s Criminal Division.
Powers now faces a maximum penalty of up to 15 years in prison, three years’ probation and fines of up to $250,000 officials said.
Sentencing was scheduled for March 31.
Because he agreed to cooperate with ongoing government investigations, officials said, he might get a reduced sentence.
According to charges filed Sept. 10, Powers worked as the deputy commander and civilian executive assistant for Depot Support Activity, Far East, which falls under USFK command.
He was responsible for purchases and contracts by and for the Army, officials said.
In the course of being investigated, Powers admitted to federal agents that from 2001 to 2003, he “used his official position to violate DOD contracting rules and sole-source several DOD contracts for truck parts … and services to a Korean contractor’s company in exchange for money,” the Department of Justice release read.
The Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, known as CID, first investigated the case; agents from the Los Angeles office of the FBI also were involved.
Raymond Hulser and James A. Crowell IV of the U.S. Justice Department Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section prosecuted the case, officials said.