Construction Company CEO Admits Bribing APG Army Biochemist Researcher For Government Contracts | USAO-MD
BaltimoreMaryland – John R. Conigliaro, 60, of Kingsville, Maryland, pleaded guilty yesterday to conspiring to bribe a public official.
The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Erek L. Barron; Special Agent in Charge Thomas J. Sobocinski of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Baltimore Field Office; Special Agent in Charge Christopher Dillard of the Department of Defense Office of Inspector General, Defense Criminal Investigative Service – Mid-Atlantic Field Office; and Special Agent in Charge L. Scott Moreland of the Army Criminal Investigation Division.
Conigliaro is owner and CEO of EISCO, Inc. EISCO provides general construction services, including stationary and portable biochemical laboratories.
According to his guilty plea, from 2012 to 2019, Conigliaro bribed an Army research biologist (Civil Official 1), who worked at the Chemical Biology Center (CB Center) of the US Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (CCDC), located on Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. The CCDC CB Center is the nation’s premier research and development center for non-medical chemical and biological weapons defense. The CB Center develops technologies in the fields of detection, protection and decontamination. Conigliaro bribed Public Agent 1 with a stream of benefits including cash loans, payments for renovations to rental properties owned by Public Agent 1, payments for renovations to the agent’s personal residence public 1 and other things of value in exchange for influencing CB center projects at EISCO.
For example, in October 2013, after EISCO received its first payment of $150,000 for a government project, Conigliaro provided cash and a zero interest loan of $40,000 to Public Agent 1 to finance the purchase of two rental properties. Once Public Official 1 purchased the rental properties, Conigliaro paid thousands of dollars in renovations to the rental properties. In addition, Public Official 1 signed a “promissory note,” in which Public Official 1 wrote that he had repaid Conigliaro some of the funds Conigliaro had given him with the CB Center projects.
Additionally, from 2016 to 2018, Public Officer 1 led three CB center projects at EISCO. During the execution of one of these projects, Conigliaro spent about half the time not performing work but being “on call”. During the same period, Conigliaro paid over $30,000 in renovations to Public Officer 1’s personal residence, including over $20,000 to renovate Public Officer 1’s kitchen and over $16,000 to replace the siding of the personal residence of public official 1.
According to the guilty plea, from July 2012 to 2019, Conigliaro paid more than $95,000 in bribes to Public Official 1, and during the same period, Public Official 1 awarded more than $95,000 in bribes. million dollar contracts at EISCO.
Conigliaro faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison followed by up to three years of probation for conspiring to bribe a public official. U.S. District Judge Deborah L. Boardman set sentencing for May 10, 2022, at 10 a.m.
U.S. Attorney Erek L. Barron commended the FBI, the Department of Defense’s Office of Inspector General and the Army’s Criminal Investigations Division for their work in the investigation. Barron thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew P. Phelps and Harry Gruber, who are prosecuting the federal case.
For more information about the Maryland U.S. Attorney’s Office, its priorities, and the resources available to help the community, please visit www.justice.gov/usao-md and https://www.justice.gov/usao-md/community-outreach.
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