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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of California

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Former Defense Department Employee Sentenced for Public Corruption While Working at Sierra Army Depot and at Naval Air Station Lemoore

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Jeffery Parsons, 44, of Dillon, Montana, was sentenced on Monday by U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller to one year in prison for conspiring to accept illegal gratuities on account of official actions and conspiring to sell government property without authority. Judge Mueller also ordered Parsons to forfeit to the United States over $230,000.

According to court documents, Parsons was a civilian employee of the U.S. Department of Defense. In November 2009, Parsons began working as an Environmental Protection Specialist at Sierra Army Depot in Herlong, California (SIAD). He later held the same position at Naval Air Station Lemoore in Lemoore, California (NASL). In his official positions at SIAD and NASL, Parsons’ responsibilities included the disposition of hazardous materials such as batteries, fuel and oil.

In October 2012, Parsons, his wife, and their associate Travis Wong agreed that Parsons would use his authority at SIAD to allow Wong to sell valuable materials from the installation and that, in return, Wong would pay Parsons and his wife a portion of his proceeds from the sales. After Parsons transferred to NASL, Parsons, his wife, and Wong continued their illegal scheme. Just as Parsons had done at SIAD, he abused his authority at NASL by allowing Wong to sell materials removed from the U.S. Navy base. Once again, Wong paid Parsons and his wife a portion of his proceeds from the sales. In total, Wong received approximately $314,000 from selling government property, and he paid Parsons and his wife approximately $56,000. Wong made the illegal payments by checks payable to a company registered to Parsons’ wife, as well as checks payable to Parsons’ daughter.

While carrying out their illegal scheme with Wong, Parsons and his wife also began a separate scheme. Specifically, Parsons allowed his wife to sell materials from SIAD to third-party recycling companies. Parsons’ wife falsely represented to those companies that she and her company had a contract with SIAD or were otherwise authorized by SIAD to sell the recyclers materials removed from the installation. In total, the recycling companies collectively paid Parsons’ wife approximately $175,000.

On March 16, Judge Mueller sentenced Wong to three years of probation and ordered him to forfeit to the United States approximately $314,000.

This case is the product of an investigation by the Defense Criminal Investigative Service and the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command. Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Thuesen is prosecuting the case.

Topic(s): 
Public Corruption
Press Release Number: 
2:19-cr-030 KJM
Updated August 25, 2020