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Guilty Plea By Shot-Show Defendant

Haim Geri, one of the 22 shot-show defendants, pleaded guilty yesterday in the District of Columbia to one count of conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

He now faces 18 to 24 months in prison and a $250,000 fine. A sentencing date wasn’t set.

Geri, 51, who lives in Miami, was charged in a superceding indictment with conspiracy to violate the FCPA, violating the FCPA, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and aiding and abetting. He also faced a forfeiture count.

The government charged the shot-show defendants with plotting to bribe the minister of defense for Gabon to sell military and law enforcement products. But the scheme was part of an FBI undercover operation and no foreign official was actually involved.

Geri agreed to pay a 20 percent “commission” to a sales agent who he believed represented Gabon’s minister of defense. The bribe was intended to win a portion of a $15 million deal to outfit the country’s presidential guard. The “sales agent” was an undercover FBI agent.

Last month, Daniel Alvirez, another shot-show defendant, pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to violate the FCPA, and Jonathan Spiller pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA.

In September last year, Richard Bistrong, the key intermediary between the FBI and the shot-show defendants, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and other statutes.

Bistrong, a former vice president for international sales at Armor Holdings Inc., faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. His sentencing is pending.

Download Haim Geri’s April 28, 2011 plea agreement here.

Our thanks to a reader in Washington, D.C. for the research for this post.

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