Former U.S. Army Major Pleads Guilty to Bribery Related to Contracting in Support of Iraq War
Defendant Accepted $250,000 Related to the Award of Bottled Water Contracts
WASHINGTON - A former U.S. Army major pleaded guilty today to bribery related to his work as a contracting officer’s representative in Kuwait from 2004 to 2006, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
Derrick L. Shoemake, 49, of Moreno Valley, Calif., pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Court Judge Dolly M. Gee in the Central District of California to a criminal information charging him with two counts of bribery. According to the court document, Major Shoemake was deployed to Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, as a contracting officer’s representative in charge of coordinating and accepting delivery of bottled water in support of U.S. troops in Iraq. While serving in Kuwait, Shoemake agreed to assist a contractor with his delivery of bottled water. In return, the contractor paid Shoemake a total of approximately $215,000, most of which was delivered to Shoemake’s designee in Los Angeles. Shoemake received an additional $35,000 from a second contractor for his perceived influence over the award of bottled water contracts in Afghanistan. In total, Shoemake admitted receiving approximately $250,000 from these two government contractors in 2005 and 2006.
Shoemake faces up to 15 years in prison for each bribery count, as well as a fine of $250,000 or three times the monetary equivalent of the thing of value. Additionally, Shoemake has agreed to criminal forfeiture of $250,000 to the United States. A sentencing date has not yet been scheduled by the court.
As a result of this investigation 17 individuals, including Shoemake, have pleaded guilty or been found guilty at trial for their roles in the schemes at Camp Arifjan.
This case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Richard B. Evans of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section, and Trial Attorneys Mark W. Pletcher and Emily W. Allen of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section. The case is being investigated by the Army Criminal Investigations Division, the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the FBI, the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction, the Internal Revenue Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and others.