Francis stands at the epicenter of the investigation, accused of bribing multiple high-level officials with luxury travel, prostitutes and other perks including Lady Gaga tickets, in exchange for confidential information on ship movements and other favors that would help GDMA. GDMA provides Navy ships with port services like tug boats, waste disposal and fuel to the tune of millions of dollars per visit.
The scandal has reached as high as the head of Naval intelligence, Vice Adm. Ted Branch, whose access to classified material was revoked in October for his alleged link to GDMA. Rear Adm. Bruce Loveless was similarly suspended from accessing classified information as part of the same investigation.
"The allegations against Admirals Branch and Loveless involve inappropriate conduct prior to their current assignments and flag officer rank," the Navy said when announcing the suspensions. "There is no indication, nor do the allegations suggest, that in either case there was any breach of classified information."
In November a third Navy officer, Commander Jose Luis Sanchez, was arrested in Florida and charged with giving Francis classified information in exchange for prostitutes, luxury travel and $10,000 cash.
All those charged in the scandal so far, except Beliveau, have pleaded not guilty. Beliveau is scheduled to appear in a California court later today to make his guilty plea. He reportedly faces up to 20 years in prison.