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Former Navy Commander Admits Prostitutes, Entertainment In 'Fat Leonard' Scandal
Another high-ranking Navy official has become entangled in the “Fat Leonard” bribery scandal, prosecutors announced Tuesday.
Former Cmdr. Troy Amundson, 50, who coordinated joint military exercises with the Navy’s foreign counterparts from 2005 to 2013, pleaded guilty in San Diego federal court Tuesday to federal bribery conspiracy charges.
He admitted to passing confidential information to Leonard Glenn Francis, the military contractor at the center of the biggest corruption scandal in modern Navy history, as well as taking actions that benefited Francis’ company, Glenn Defense Marine Asia.
In exchange, Amundson admitted to accepting gifts from Francis from 2012 to 2013, including meals, drinks, entertainment and the services of several prostitutes from Mongolia.
In one email, Amundson arranged for the “handoff” of some proprietary information to Francis: “your program is awesome. I am a small dog just trying to get a bone… however I am very happy with my small program. I still need five minutes to pass some data when we can meet up. Cannot print.”
Amundson, of Ramsey, Minn., also admitted to deleting all of his personal emails with Francis in 2013 on the same day he was interviewed by federal investigators about the case.
He is one of 20 defendants charged in the investigation who have pleaded guilty. Nine others are still fighting charges.
Francis is among those who have pleaded guilty, admitting to defrauding the Navy out of at least $35 million.
©2018 The San Diego Union-Tribune. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
For U.S. service members who have fought alongside the Kurds, President Donald Trump's decision to approve repositioning U.S. forces in Syria ahead of Turkey's invasion is a naked betrayal of valued allies.
"I am ashamed for the first time in my career," one unnamed special operator told Fox News Jennifer Griffin.
In a Twitter thread that went viral, Griffin wrote the soldier told her the Kurds were continuing to support the United States by guarding tens of thousands of ISIS prisoners even though Turkey had nullified an arrangement under which U.S. and Turkish troops were conducting joint patrols in northeastern Syria to allow the Kurdish People's Protection Units, or YPG, to withdraw.
"The Kurds are sticking by us," the soldier told Griffin. "No other partner I have ever dealt with would stand by us."
Defense Secretary Mark Esper has confirmed that a nightmare scenario has come to pass: Captured ISIS fighters are escaping as a result of Turkey's invasion of Kurdish-held northeast Syria.
Turkey's incursion has led to "the release of many dangerous ISIS detainees," Esper said in a statement on Monday.
Video footage of a purported "bombing of Kurd civilians" by Turkish military forces shown on ABC News appeared to be a nighttime firing of tracer rounds at a Kentucky gun range.
The U.S. military's seemingly never-ending mission supporting civil authorities along the southwestern border will last at least another year.
On Sept. 3, Defense Secretary Mark Esper approved a request from the Department of Homeland Security to provide a total of up to 5,500 troops along the border until Sept. 30, 2020, Lt. Gen. Laura Richardson, commander of U.S. Army North, said on Monday.