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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Puerto Rico

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 4, 2019

Individual Sentenced To 56 Months In Prison For Defrauding The U.S. Army Reserve Recruiting Assistance Program

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico – Luis De Jesús-Negrón, former Army Reserve Recruiter was sentenced by United States District Judge Aida Delgado-Colón to serve 56 months in prison and to pay restitution in the amount of $19,000 to the US Army, announced Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez, United States Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico. De Jesús-Negrón was found guilty of twenty six counts on December 6, 2018 after an eight-day jury trial.

In 2007 United States Army Reserve established the Army Reserve Recruiting Assistance Program (AR-RAP) through a task order under a contract then existing between the National Guard Bureau and the corporation Document and Packaging Broker, Inc. (Docupak).  The AR-RAP was a recruiting program designed to offer referral bonus payments to Reserve soldiers to recruit civilians to serve in the Army Reserve. The Program had two primary participants: (1) Recruiters: whose job it was to assist the Docupak subcontractors in enlisting new members into the Army Reserve; and (2) Recruiter Assistants, whose job it was to identify and assist recruit new potential members into the Army Reserve, and assist Recruiters with other related duties. Under the contract specifications of the Program, only Recruiter Assistants were eligible for recruiting referral bonuses. 

Luis De Jesús-Negrón, a Recruiter for the Army Reserve at the time of the offenses, was found guilty in Count One of the Second Superseding Indictment of conspiring to intentionally steal and obtain by fraud property belonging to the United States, to wit: the AR-RAP bonus payments. To do so, De Jesús-Negrón and a co-conspirator would set up an online account on the Docupak administered website for the Program; without authorization, utilize the personal identifiying information of the potential Soldiers, given to a Recruiter or the co-conspirator, to create a profile for the potential Soldier in the online Program account of the Recruiter Assistant; make other false entries in the online Program account to make it appear that the potential Soldier had in fact been recruited by the Recruiter Assistant; apply for the Recruiting Program eligible bonuses based on these false misrepresentations;  and when the bonuses were approved cause an interstate wire transfer for payment. In a separate scheme, De Jesús-Negrón was found guilty of obtaining money and property from Docupak by falsely representing himself to be another Army Reserve solider who was eligible to be a Recruiter Assistant under the Recruiting Program, so that Luis De Jesús-Negrón could receive referral bonus payments to which he was not entitled. Additional counts of conviction were for wire fraud and aggravated identity theft. 

“This former military recruiter defrauded a program designed to enhance military recruitments at a time when qualified Soldiers were desperately needed perform America’s ongoing missions around the world,” said Special Agent in Charge John F. Khin, Southeast Field Office, Defense Criminal Investigative Service. “DCIS remains fully committed to holding accountable anyone who chooses to fraudulently enrich themselves and violate positions of trust. Today's conviction is a testament to our dedication in the fight against fraud and corruption affecting Department of Defense programs.”

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Myriam Y. Fernández-González.

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Topic(s): 
Financial Fraud
Identity Theft
Component(s): 
Updated April 4, 2019