WASHINGTON—A U.S. contractor pleaded guilty and has been sentenced for paying illegal gratuities to a former U.S. Army director of contracting, and for violating the Travel Act in connection with U.S. Army contracts awarded from an Army recreational facility in Germany, Assistant Attorney General Alice S. Fisher of the Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Susan W. Brooks of the Southern District of Indiana announced today.
Alvan Vance McQueen II, 58, of Shelbyville, Ind., pleaded guilty to a two-count criminal information and was sentenced today at U.S. District Court in the Southern District of Indiana in Indianapolis, before U.S. District Judge David F. Hamilton. The information, which was filed Dec. 15, 2005, charged McQueen with one count of paying illegal gratuities to a former U.S. Army director of contracting and an undercover agent from the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Division Command, and one count of violating the Travel Act by traveling from Indiana to Germany, New York, Florida and Nevada to facilitate payment of the illegal gratuities.
U.S. District Court Judge Hamilton sentenced McQueen to 12 months, one day in prison, one year supervised release, and imposed restitution in the amount of $80,000, along with a fine in the amount of $23,500.
According to the information, the gratuities were paid by McQueen in connection with contracts awarded to McQueen’s company by the Edelweiss Lodge and Resort, Armed Forces Recreation Center (AFRC Europe), in Garmisch, Germany. The Department of the Army serves as the executive agent for the AFRC Europe, operating the AFRC Europe on behalf of the Department of Defense. Patrons at the AFRC Europe include active duty U.S. military personnel serving in Afghanistan and Iraq.
According to the information, McQueen, president and owner of Flat Rock Furniture, Inc. in Waldron, Ind., gave cash and other benefits directly and indirectly to the former director of contracting in return for the director of contracting’s agreement to fraudulently inflate certain line items by $80,000 in a contract between Flat Rock Furniture and the AFRC Europe to supply it with furniture. According to the information, McQueen paid the former director of contracting approximately $43,000 in cash and provided other things of value, including hotel rooms, airfare and tickets to the Indianapolis 500, in return for the former director’s agreement to approve the fraudulently inflated contract and split the fraudulently inflated amount with McQueen. According to the information, McQueen also passed $100,000 in cash to an undercover agent posing as the former director of contracting’s successor as part of a scheme to inflate certain line items by $200,000 in a purported contract between McQueen’s company and the AFRC Europe.
The case was investigated by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Division Command and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Deputy Chief Mark F. Mendelsohn and Trial Attorney Suzanne R. Clement of the Fraud Section of the Criminal Division at the Department of Justice and Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven D. DeBrota of the Southern District of Indiana.