February 25, 2024
Leonard Glenn Francis arrest picture. Courtesy Interpol Venezuela

Navy contractor Leonard Glenn “Fats Leonard” Francis appeared in a San Diego federal courtroom Thursday practically 9 years after pleading responsible to bribing Navy officers in a wide-ranging corruption scheme.

Prosecutors stated Thursday that they’re in search of to have Francis sentenced on the costs he pleaded to in January of 2015 earlier than probably submitting new prices in connection along with his alleged flight from the nation.

Francis was awaiting sentencing when officers say he minimize off a GPS monitor he was required to put on and disappeared from his San Diego home arrest in September of 2022. He was arrested in Venezuela and introduced again to the US following a prisoner trade between the 2 nations.

However Francis’ sentencing gained’t be imminent as his protection attorneys are in search of to withdraw from the case. If U.S. District Janis Sammartino approves the withdrawal, Francis’ new attorneys would require time to familiarize themselves with the case.

Assistant U.S. Legal professional Fred Sheppard argued in courtroom that Francis’ present attorneys have been dealing with the case for a number of years and are finest suited to deal with the sentencing.

“Permitting withdrawal at this explicit time limit gives a delay that might go on for fairly a while,” he advised Sammartino.

Whereas the decide stated Sheppard’s considerations have been legitimate, she set one other listening to in February to revisit the difficulty of Francis’ illustration.

Francis pleaded responsible to bribing Navy officers with fancy lodge stays, meals and prostitutes in trade for labeled info, persuading them to direct plane carriers to ports he managed in order that they may very well be resupplied by his Singapore-based husbanding firm, Glenn Protection Marine Asia. He additionally admitted overcharging the U.S. navy for these companies in an quantity exceeding $35 million.

The prosecutions in opposition to Francis and quite a few Navy officers he allegedly bribed resulted in responsible pleas from dozens of defendants and a jury trial that resulted in 4 officers convicted.

Nonetheless, allegations of prosecutorial misconduct surfaced, resulting in the dismissal of the 4 officers’ convictions and new responsible pleas to misdemeanor counts that resulted in no jail time. The federal government has since moved to dismiss the responsible plea of one other Navy officer who testified on the trial and scale back the costs in opposition to different officers who pleaded responsible.

— Metropolis Information Service