- The Washington Times - Monday, November 2, 2020

A retired U.S. Navy petty officer from Maryland will spend more than two years in federal prison after admitting he funneled business to a Singapore-based defense contractor in exchange for luxury hotel accommodations and travel expenses, federal prosecutors said.

Former Chief Petty Officer Brooks Alonzo Parks, 48, is the latest Navy official to be ensnared in the wide-ranging corruption and fraud investigation involving Leonard Glenn Francis, known as “Fat Leonard,” and his company, Glenn Defense Marine Asia. The company was accused of overcharging the government while providing logistics support for U.S. Navy ships in the region.

Mr. Parks was the senior logistics petty officer assigned to the staff of the Navy’s 7th Fleet commander. Federal prosecutors in California said he was “actively involved” in managing the 7th Fleet’s logistics support budget along with signing and processing invoices. Mr. Francis regularly paid for luxury hotel rooms for Mr. Parks and his friends throughout Asia.

“Parks had expensive taste and wasn’t restrained in demanding ever more luxuriant accommodations from (Glenn Defense Marine Asia.) In one instance, Parks demanded the $4,800 per night Ritz Carlton Suite in Singapore,” federal prosecutors said.

In return for the bribes, then Chief Petty Officer Parks approved and expedited invoices and payment requests to Glenn Defense Marine Asia and provided the company with bidding and pricing information that Mr. Francis used to “crush” his competition. Mr. Parks also provided the company with port visit scheduling information involving U.S. Navy ships, officials with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California said.

Mr. Parks pleaded guilty earlier this year to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery. He also will pay more than $25,400 in restitution to the government.

Leonard Glenn Francis pleaded guilty in 2015 to bribery and fraud charges, admitting that he presided over a decade-long conspiracy resulting in millions of dollars in bribes paid out to scores of U.S. Navy officials. So far, 23 defendants have pleaded guilty as part of the ongoing investigation.

• Mike Glenn can be reached at mglenn@washingtontimes.com.

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