Justice News

Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Former Government Contractor Executive Pleads Guilty to Unlawful Campaign Contributions

A former government contractor executive pleaded guilty today to conspiring to make unlawful campaign contributions to a candidate for Congress and a political action committee (PAC), making unlawful campaign contributions, and causing the submission of false information to the Federal Election Commission.

According to court documents, Martin Kao, 48, of Honolulu, Hawaii, was the owner of a defense contractor prohibited from making contributions in federal elections. Kao and his co-conspirators created a shell company, which they used to make an illegal contribution – using government contractor funds – to a PAC supporting the election of a candidate for the U.S. Senate. Kao also used family members as conduits to make illegal contributions to the campaign committee of the same candidate, and then reimbursed them for those donations using funds obtained from Kao’s company.

Kao is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 9, 2023. He faces up to five years in prison on each count. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite, Jr. of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves for the District of Columbia; Assistant Director in Charge Steven M. D’Antuono of the FBI Washington Field Office; and Special Agent in Charge Christopher Dillard of the Department of Defense, Office of Inspector General, Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS), Mid-Atlantic Field Office made the announcement.

The FBI Washington Field Office and DCIS Mid-Atlantic Field Office are investigating the case.

Trial Attorney Lauren Castaldi of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Elizabeth Aloi and Joshua Rothstein for the District of Columbia are prosecuting the case.

An indictment is merely an allegation. All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Topic(s): 
Public Corruption
Voting and Elections
Press Release Number: 
22-1023
Updated September 27, 2022