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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Illinois

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Former Air Force Official Sentenced For Receiving Gratuities From Defense Contractor

The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today that Dennis Charles Toenjes, Sr., 66, was sentenced on the charge of receiving gratuities in connection with his former role as an official with the United States Air Force. Toenjes had previously pled guilty to the charge. Toenjes was sentenced to serve three years of probation, with the first six months to be in home confinement. The district court also ordered Toenjes to pay a fine of $500.00 and pay a special assessment of $100.00.

Evidence revealed in court records shows that on February 3, 2009, Toenjes received and accepted gratuities from Stephen Keith Sweet, an owner of an asbestos abatement company which performed work on Scott Air Force Base. Sweet would not have given such gratuities to Toenjes but for his position as a contracting official with the United States Air Force. Gratuities included Sweet paying for Toenjes’ car repairs and for his home heating and cooling repairs. All payments made by Sweet to Toenjes totaled $9,382.01. Sweet is serving an 18-month sentence of imprisonment for tax fraud and paying gratuities to a government official.

The case was investigated by the Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigations and the United States Air Force’s Office of Special Investigations. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Liam Coonan and Special Assistant United States Attorney Michael Hallock.

Updated February 19, 2015