A former and long-time employee of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has pled guilty to accepting bribes and providing non-public information about pending HUD contracts to a business owner in exchange for Super Bowl tickets, travel opportunities, and thousands of dollars in cash. The employee, Kevin Jones, pled guilty earlier this year. He was recently sentenced to two years in prison for the crime.
Jones was a HUD contract oversight specialist, which meant he had access to bid, proposal, and source selection information about HUD contracts. Authorities accused him of using that access to provide a Maryland tech services business owner with information that enabled him to obtain government contracts. The case named two contracts valued at $4.5 million as being a result of the inside information. Jones later approved invoices totaling nearly $4 million for work done on one of the two contracts.
The same contractor was associated with bribery of another HUD employee who was recently sentenced. That employee received one year in prison after being convicted of accepting money, tickets to sporting events, and “other things of value” in exchange for information. That employee was a former supervisory contract oversight specialist. The business owner himself pled guilty last year to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery and two counts of conspiracy to pay gratuities. In his plea, he admitted to bribing the two employees. He still awaits sentencing.
One other government employee was also involved in this scandal. A former employee of the D.C. State Superintendent of Education Office was bribed in exchange for payments on contracts. She was a special education analyst and received 56 months in prison for accepting bribes after being terminated from the agency in 2015. The business owner’s business is not named in the lawsuit because it is not part of the accusations of bribery.
Tell us what you think:
- Is one or two years a long enough sentence?
- Do you think the contractor should be sentenced?
- Should the business be included in the case?
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