US Army employee pleads guilty to conspiracy, accepted thousands of dollars in bribes

PHOTO: Soldiers run past a building at Schofield Barracks in Hawaii, Dec. 17, 2018.PlayMaj. Leah Ganoni/U.S. Army
WATCH News headlines today: May 2, 2019

A former U.S. Army civilian employee pleaded guilty on Thursday to conspiring to accept tens of thousands of dollars worth of bribes and disclose sensitive Army procurement information.

Franklin Raby, 67, of Greeneville, Tennessee, received items of value from a company hoping to get "sensitive internal U.S. Department of Defense procurement information" while he was working as a civilian range operations manager at Hawaii's Schofield Barracks from March 2015 through May 2018, according to court documents.

The company, REK Associates, sent Raby high-value items, including a 1969 Ford Galaxie, custom H&H rifle, and $2,300 diamond earrings "meant for the defendant's wife," documents said. In total, the government estimates Raby received between $40,000 and $95,000 worth of items from REK Associates. However, he did not properly fill out financial disclosure forms, including gift and travel reimbursements over a five-year period.

According to court documents, Raby used his "position of influence" to assist REK Associates in receiving a government contract by tailoring the contract's language so that the company had a better chance of getting it, the government said.

Raby would ultimately go on to leave the Army, accepting a position as a program manager with REK Associates in June 2018.

He became a Defense Department civilian employee in 2006 after retiring from the Army as a Sergeant Major two years prior. In addition to working as a range operations manager, he served as a contract officer representative and an agreement officer representative, providing "technical direction, clarification and guidance to contractors performing on certain contracts with the federal government," court documents said.

REK Associates, which did not respond to a request for comment by ABC News, had been awarded multiple Defense Department contracts in the past to assist in maintaining U.S. military properties.

Raby could be sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison. His sentencing is scheduled for August 5.