Woman admits paying bribes, engaging in fraud

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TRENTON, N.J. (AP) - Federal prosecutors say a New Jersey woman has admitted paying bribes to a former Veterans Affairs Department employee.

Donna Doremus of Hopewell pleaded guilty Tuesday to bribing a public official, conspiracy to defraud the United States and making and subscribing to false federal tax returns. She faces 23 years in prison when she’s sentenced Sept. 22.

Prosecutors say the bribes were paid in connection with VA contracts awarded to companies Doremus owned. She also falsely represented that one of her companies was owned and controlled by a service-disabled veteran.

Between 2007 and July 2012, Doremus paid about $671,000 in bribes to Jarod Machinga, who was a supervisory engineer at the VA’s East Orange campus. Prosecutors say Machinga directed more than $6 million of VA construction projects to Doremus’ companies.

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