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NCIS agent pleads guilty in scandal

  • Article by: Craig Whitlock Washington Post
  • December 12, 2013 - 8:24 PM

– A senior law enforcement agent accused of taking bribes in a Navy corruption scandal has agreed to plead guilty and cooperate with investigators, a major break in a case that has ensnared half a dozen Navy officers and threatens to tar more.

John Beliveau II, a supervisory special agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, is scheduled to enter a guilty plea Tuesday in U.S. Federal Court in San Diego, according to court records and his attorney. Beliveau was arrested in September and charged with helping a Singapore-based Navy contractor, Glenn Defense Marine Asia, dodge multiple criminal investigations by leaking inside information about NCIS probes in exchange for prostitutes, cash and other favors.

“He will be pleading guilty and admitting his conduct,” said his attorney, Gretchen Von Helms of San Diego. She declined to comment further, saying that terms of his plea deal would remain confidential until he appears in court next week.

Kelly Thornton, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney’s office in San Diego, declined to comment further.

Two people involved in the case, speaking on condition of anonymity. said Beliveau had agreed to share information with federal prosecutors about his extensive relationship with Leonard Glenn Francis, the president of Glenn Defense Marine and a co-defendant in the case, as well as others involved in the investigation.

Known in Navy circles as “Fat Leonard” for his imposing physical presence, Francis is a Malaysian citizen and a well-known figure to scores of Navy officers whose ships depended on his firm for logistical support during Asian port visits. He has pleaded not guilty. One of his attorneys, David S. Black, did not return calls.

Beliveau’s guilty plea would mark a big advance for investigators, who are trying to determine the scope of the alleged corruption involved in the awarding and administering of lucrative Navy contracts for port services in Asia. Two Navy commanders also have been arrested and charged with taking bribes. Two captains have been suspended or reassigned by the Navy. And two admirals who work in Navy intelligence have had their access to classified materials suspended during the investigation.

According to charging documents, Beliveau helped to thwart multiple fraud investigations into Glenn Defense Marine by copying sensitive records from the case files of other NCIS agents and feeding the details to Francis.

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