LOS ANGELES – A U.S. Army contracting officer representative who admitted taking hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes from South Korean contractors in return for approving fraudulent invoices was sentenced today to 18 months in federal prison.
Marcus D. Flowers, 51, of Enterprise, Alabama, was sentenced by United States District Judge Percy Anderson. In addition to the prison term, Judge Anderson ordered Flowers to pay $351,043 in restitution to the United States Army.
Flowers pleaded guilty in June to one count of conspiracy to commit bribery.
Flowers, who worked as a contracting officer representative for the United States Army, was responsible for approving invoices related to the installation of closed circuit televisions at U.S. military installations in the Republic of Korea after verifying the completion of work by contractors. According to court documents, Flowers accepted $351,043 in cash over the course of four years in return for approving payments despite the fact that some contractors never installed the CCTVs, or they installed inferior CCTV models than those required by the contracts.
“This case presents an extreme example of pervasive corruption,” prosecutors wrote in a sentencing memorandum filed with the court. “For at least four years, [Flowers] essentially engaged in a business of betraying his country and dispensing government money in return for cash. The scope was massive, cheating taxpayers out of millions of dollars and reaping [Flowers] the benefit of hundreds of thousands of dollars.”
As part of his plea, Flowers has agreed to forfeit to the government any remaining proceeds of the bribery scheme, which includes real estate purchased in the Philippines.
Prior to surrendering to U.S. authorities late last spring, Flowers was convicted of offenses related to the bribery scheme in a South Korean court and he served approximately 10 months in prison there.
Flowers was permitted to begin serving his prison term on June 25, 2018 so that he may receive medical treatment for a serious health condition.
The federal case that led to Flowers’ arrest and subsequent plea resulted from a joint investigation conducted by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, which received assistance from South Korean authorities.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Daniel O’Brien of the Public Corruption and Civil Rights Section. Assistant United States Attorney Jonathan Galatzan of the Asset Forfeiture Section is assisting in the case.
Release No. 17-200
Central District of California DOJ / Release No. 17-200 / November 6, 2017