Highest-Ranking Navy Official, Capt. Daniel Dusek, Sentenced In Massive 'Fat Leonard' Bribery Scheme

The highest-ranking Navy official to date in the "Fat Leonard" bribery scheme was sentenced in federal court Friday to 46 months in prison for giving classified information to a foreign defense contractor in exchange for prostitutes, luxury travel, and other gifts.

According to the United States Department of Justice, U.S. Navy Capt. Daniel Dusek was sentenced by a U.S. district judge and ordered to report to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons on June 15, 2016. He was also ordered to pay a $70,000 fine and $30,000 in restitution to the Navy.

Dusek, 49, pleaded guilty to a single count of conspiracy to commit bribery in January 2015. Dusek admitted to conspiring with Leonard Glenn Francis, aka Fat Leonard, and his company, Glenn Defense Marine Asia (GDMA), by using his influence as Deputy Director of Operations for the Seventh Fleet, headquartered in Yokosuka, Japan, and later as executive officer of the USS Essex and the commanding officer of the USS Bonhomme Richard.

In exchange for meals, alcohol, entertainment, gifts, dozens of nights and incidentals at luxury hotels, and the services of prostitutes, GDMA provided port services to U.S. Navy ships.

Francis confirmed the bribes in an email to his employees.

"(Dusek) is a golden asset to drive the big decks (aircraft carriers) into our fat revenue GDMA ports."

Justice Department's Criminal Division Assistant Attorney General Leslie R. Caldwell said Dusek violated his sacred oath to the United States.

"As a Navy officer, Captain Dusek took an oath to bear true faith and allegiance to the United States. Instead, he chose self-interest, greed and prurience. And when he learned of the investigation, Captain Dusek deleted his email accounts in an attempt to shield his crimes from law enforcement. The Department of Justice is committed to holding public officials responsible when they betray the public trust."

U.S. Attorney Laura E. Duffy of the Southern District of California echoed Caldwell's condemnation of Daniel Dusek.

"Captain Dusek's betrayal is the most distressing because the Navy placed so much trust, power and authority in his hands. This is a fitting sentence for a man who was so valuable that his conspirators labeled him their 'Golden Asset.'"

Director James B. Burch of the Department of Defense's Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS) said corruption will not be tolerated and the United States will "vigorously investigate and prosecute" violators.

"This is an unfortunate example of dishonorable naval officers who recklessly risked the safety of our troops by trading classified information for cash, extravagant gifts and prostitutes. Cases such as these are not motivated by need or other difficult personal circumstances; they are the product of simple greed. This investigation should serve as a warning that those who compromise the integrity of the United States will face their day of reckoning. DCIS and our law enforcement partners will pursue these crimes relentlessly."

Director Andrew Traver of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) noted that "Captain Dusek put greed and personal pleasure above the safety of his shipmates and, in doing so, violated his sworn oath as a naval officer."

According to CNN, Dusek is the highest-ranking official charged in the massive Navy bribery scandal.

According to his plea agreement, he hand-delivered Navy ship schedules to the GDMA office in Japan or emailed them directly.

Ten people have been charged in the scheme and nine have pleaded guilty. Another is awaiting trial.

According to the plea agreement, GDMA paid for a hotel for Dusek and his family at the Marriott Waikiki in Hawaii on July 19, 2010, and on August 5, 2010, GDMA paid for a hotel room for Dusek at the Shangri-La in Makati, Philippines, and provided him with the services of a prostitute.

When Dusek learned that Francis and Navy personnel had been arrested, he deleted the contents of his email accounts in an effort to avoid detection by law enforcement.

[Image via U.S. Navy]