Army sergeant pleads guilty to conspiring to take bribes
PADUCAH, Ky. (AP) -
A Fort Campbell Army sergeant has pleaded guilty to conspiring to take bribes from vendors seeking contracts in Afghanistan.
The U.S. attorney's office said 43-year-old Ramiro Pena Jr. of Fort Campbell pleaded guilty Thursday in Paducah to conspiracy to commit bribery. Sentencing will be Oct. 15.
Prosecutors said Pena admitted receiving a Rolex watch and $100,000 in bribe payments from the vendors through his supervisor in 2008 and 2009. The supervisor pleaded guilty last year to conspiring to launder bribes. The office also said Pena admitted he sent some of the money to his family in Kentucky, spread out in a number of greeting cards.
Pena also used bribe money, the prosecutor's office said, to pay family expenses and buy a motorcycle.
The prosecutor's office said Pena and his supervisor procured supplies for the Humanitarian Aid Yard at Bagram airfield by issuing contracts to local Afghan vendors. The release said Dennis and Pena processed more than 200 contracts worth about $30 million.