FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, April 3, 2012
For Information Contact:
Former Background Investigator for Federal Government
Pleads Guilty to Threatening a Federal Law Enforcement Officer
WASHINGTON - Gerald J. Greene, a former Special Agent of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM), pled guilty today to a charge stemming from physical threats he posted on an Internet website against a federal official involved in his termination from OPM.
The guilty plea, which took place in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, was announced by U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. and Patrick E. McFarland, Inspector General for the Office of Personnel Management.
Greene, 47, of West Babylon, N.Y., pled guilty to one count of threatening a federal law enforcement officer. He appeared this afternoon before the Honorable Judge Richard W. Roberts. Greene is scheduled to be sentenced on June 19, 2012, and could face up to 12 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines.
As part of his guilty plea, Greene, who worked for OPM’s Federal Investigative Services (FIS), admitted that he posted online, anonymous threats of physical harm against an official who was involved in his termination from OPM. From in or about February of 2005, Greene was employed as a background investigator with OPM. On or about March 11, 2010, OPM placed him on administrative leave. His employment with OPM was terminated eight months later.
As part of an administrative investigation of Greene’s activities that led to him being placed on leave, Greene was instructed to report as soon as possible to the OPM office in New York City on or about March 11, 2010. There, as part of the investigation, Greene met with an official from OPM/FIS. During the interview of Greene by the official, Greene became upset and angry at what he perceived to be the official’s attitude toward Greene, and Greene confronted the official about what Greene perceived to be disrespectful treatment. When the OPM/FIS official asked Greene thereafter to sign the letter acknowledging he was being placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation, Greene refused. Greene was then escorted from the federal building by the Federal Protective Service uniformed police.
After Greene was placed on administrative leave, his anger grew toward the OPM/FIS official, OPM/FIS, and OPM in general. He appealed his termination to the Merit Service Protection Board. He also began to check on the OPM/FIS official by searching websites, press releases, and the like regarding OPM and that official.
In or about August of 2011, Greene conducted a search through Google of the official’s name and located it in a story posted on a website about a federal criminal guilty plea by an OPM background investigator for falsifying a background investigation. OPM and the OPM/FIS official were listed in the story, respectively, as being the investigative agency and one of the investigators whose work led to the guilty plea. Subsequently, on or about August 19, 2011, August 21, 2011, and October 1, 2011, Greene posted comments to the story, the second and third comments threatening the OPM/FIS official with physical harm.
When Greene was confronted about these matters by a Special Agent of OPM’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG) on or about November 18, 2011, Greene admitted that he had posted the threatening comments. He stated, however, that he did not own or possess a gun and was not planning on actually carrying out the posted threats.
In announcing the guilty plea, U.S. Attorney Machen and Inspector General McFarland praised the work of Special Agent Nathaniel Smith, OPM/OIG. They also acknowledged the efforts of Assistant U.S. Attorneys Daniel P. Butler and Ellen Chubin Epstein, who investigated and prosecuted this matter.