Military: Marine took bribes from Iraqi contractors
Posted June 24, 2010 5:16 p.m. EDT
Camp Lejeune, N.C. — The federal government wants to seize four vehicles from a Camp Lejeune Marine that authorities say accepted at least $500,000 in bribes from contractors while stationed in Iraq.
Master Sgt. Terence Walton was convicted in a court-martial last month of bribery, graft and failure to obey a direct order.
Walton was a contract specialist in Fallujah for the Marine Corps' 2nd Supply Battalion from February 2005 to January 2006. He was responsible for awarding and managing contracts for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Fellow Marines and Iraqi vendors told investigators with the Defense Criminal Investigative Service that Walton extorted money in exchange for awarding contracts for paving and construction services. One vendor gave him a Visa card loaded with $50,000 for not penalizing his firm for repeatedly missing deadlines on a contract, according to an affidavit filed in federal court.
Authorities said the contracts Walton awarded exceeded government cost estimates by up to 479 percent.
The DCIS has asked a judge to seize a 2004 BMW 325i, 1998 Mercedes CLK320, a 2003 Ford Excursion and a 2008 Mitsubishi Eclipse, alleging that they were purchased with money Walton obtained through the bribes.