By JAN DENNIS
The Associated Press
Friday, August 19, 2005; 8:32 PM
PEORIA, Ill. -- A former employee of a Halliburton Co. subsidiary pleaded guilty Friday to accepting more than $100,000 in kickbacks from an Iraqi company in exchange for securing it a U.S. military construction contract, prosecutors said.
Glenn Allen Powell, 40, of Cedar Park, Texas, will be sentenced Nov. 18 in federal court for major fraud against the United States and violating the anti-kickback act. He faces 10 years in prison on each count and up to $1.25 million in fines.
"He's very sorry about what he did. He made a mistake and he wants to make it right," said Powell's attorney, Samuel Bassett.
Powell, who was fired after an internal investigation, has repaid part of the money to Halliburton and plans to repay the rest, Bassett said.
Prosecutors say Powell was a subcontracts administrator for Halliburton subsidiary KBR Inc., which provides engineering and other project management services for the military.
In exchange for $110,300 in kickbacks, Powell recommended the Iraqi company for a $609,000 subcontract to renovate four buildings into office and warehouse space, prosecutors say. Prosecutors declined to name the company.
"A government contract is not a license to steal," U.S. Attorney Jan Paul Miller said in a statement. "The public should be able to trust that the individuals who implement government contracts do so honestly."
Halliburton has removed the Iraqi company from its list of subcontractors and given the military a credit for the amount of the kickback, spokeswoman Melissa Norcross said.
Vice President Dick Cheney headed Halliburton from 1995 to 2000, and Democratic members of Congress have repeatedly questioned whether Halliburton and its subsidiaries received favorable treatment because of its connections. Cheney and other administration officials have denied Cheney had any role in Halliburton's government contract work.