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Singapore woman jailed in 'Fat Leonard' US Navy graft case

AFP  |  Singapore 

A Singaporean woman was sentenced to 33 months in jail on Friday for her role in a massive scandal dubbed the "Fat Leonard" case that rocked the US Navy.

Gursharan Kaur Sharon Rachael, 57, a former lead with the US Navy, was charged at a district court in the city-state in late 2015 for leaking confidential information in exchange for cash and luxury vacations.

She had been giving the information to Malaysian Leonard Francis, who ran a port services firm called (GDMA).

The portly, Singapore-based Francis -- dubbed "Fat Leonard" -- had admitted to plying officers with cash, booze, prostitutes and other perks to ensure US Navy ships stopped at ports where his firm operated.

Twelve US Navy officers had pleaded guilty in the to charges relating to their roles in the scandal, with nine of them sentenced to various jail terms and fines.

One of them was retired Robert Gilbeau, who became the higest ranking US Navy to be convicted in the probe and was jailed for 18 months.

US prosecutors said Francis had supplied Gilbeau with prostitutes and paid for his stay in a fancy hotel.

Singaporean state prosecutors said Gursharan "leaked confidential contract information to Leonard in exchange for over 100,000 dollars (USD 73,000) in cash and luxury vacations in and Dubai".

Specifically, information leaked by Gursharan was linked to 16 US Navy contracts, out of which GDMA won 11 worth USD 48 million, the prosecutors said.

Gursharan "played a pivotal role in Leonard's web of corruption," they said.

According to US prosecutors, Francis had picked up the tab on widespread debauchery including a May 2008 "raging multi-day party, with a rotating carousel of prostitutes, during which the conspirators drank all of the Perignon available at the Shangri-La" hotel in at a cost of more than USD 50,000.

In one port visit by the USS Blue Ridge in 2007, historical memorabilia in the MacArthur Suite at the Hotel related to legendary US "were used by the participants in sexual acts", the indictment stated.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, July 09 2018. 08:25 IST