A former senior Navy civilian was sentenced last week to five years in prison for taking bribes and lying to federal investigators, according to the Justice Department.

Xavier Fernando Monroy, 65, the former director of operations for the Military Sealift Command office in Busan, South Korea, is going behind bars for soliciting and accepting bribes to send Navy contracts to a South Korean logistics company.

He faced up to 25 years in prison and was convicted in August in a federal court in Washington on charges of bribery, conspiracy to commit bribery and making a false statement for crimes, Navy Times previously reported.

Between 2011 and 2014, Monroy used his position to conspire with both a former MSC cargo ship captain and the owner of a South Korean port services company, DK Marine, to steer over $3.3 million in contracts to the business, the DoJ release said. The scam culminated in a plot to unlawfully provide services to a Navy ship during a December 2013 port visit in Chinhae, South Korea.

Evidence at trial proved Monroy gave a co-conspirator “confidential and other proprietary internal U.S. Navy information” in exchange for thousands of dollars in cash, personal travel expenses, meals and alcoholic beverages as well as prostitution services, the release said.

During a voluntary interview in July 2019, Monroy repeatedly lied to federal agents when confronted about his illegal conduct, the DoJ said.

The former civilian captain of the dry dock ship at the center of the 2013 incident, James Russell Driver III, pleaded guilty in 2019, while the owner of the ship services company, Sung Yol “David” Kim, pleaded guilty in 2020 for his role in the scam, another DoJ release said.

The case has been compared in many ways to the notorious “Fat Leonard” scandal, one of the largest bribery investigations in military history.

Now three months after “Fat Leonard” escaped to Venezuela, many questions remain about how the Malaysian defense contractor was able to make his bold departure.

Jonathan is a staff writer and editor of the Early Bird Brief newsletter for Military Times. Follow him on Twitter @lehrfeld_media

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