- Associated Press - Tuesday, June 14, 2016

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) - A former government contracting officer has been indicted on charges that she successfully pressured a contractor to hire multiple family members.

Fifty-one-year-old Helen Renee Ballard of Brandywine, Maryland, was indicted Tuesday by a federal grand jury in Alexandria on wire fraud and other charges. Her husband, 55-year-old Robert S. Ballard, was also indicted.

Prosecutors say the scheme netted $1.3 million.

Renee Ballard was director of the General Services Administration’s Central Office Contracting Division from 2006 through 2011.

According to the indictment, she persuaded Arlington-based contractor CACI to hire her husband to a $140,000 job and inflated his credentials. She also convinced CACI to hire her brother, sister-in-law and father to jobs with annual pay ranging from $62,000 to $86,000.

Ballard’s lawyer did not return a call seeking comment Tuesday.

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