Saturday, February 17, 2007

Contractor gets 46 months for Iraq bribery

WASHINGTON — A U.S. businessman whose companies made more than $8 million in Iraq reconstruction money through a gifts-for-contracts scheme was sentenced Friday to 46 months in prison.

Philip H. Bloom, who has lived in Romania for many years, pleaded guilty last year to bribery and conspiracy to commit money laundering. He admitted that he bribed military personnel with jewelry, computers, cigars and sexual favors from women at his Baghdad villa.

His attorney said that Bloom was given a reduced sentence because he cooperated in a federal investigation.

Bloom, who controlled companies in Iraq and Romania, made bids on projects through dummy corporations. Contractors and military officials made sure that Bloom received the contracts and, in exchange, they received gifts ...

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