Indian-Origin Singaporean Woman Gets 33 Months in Jail in U.S. Navy Graft Case

Sharon Rachael Gursharan Kaur was convicted for her role in the $35 million “Fat Leonard” bribery scandal that rocked the U.S. navy.


An Indian-origin woman based in Singapore was sentenced to nearly three years in prison for her involvement in one of the biggest bribery scandals to rock the U.S. navy. Sharon Rachael Gursharan Kaur was named in the $35 million “Fat Leonard” scandal that has earlier resulted in the arrest and conviction of several U.S. naval officers.

Saying there was “flagrant abuse of trust and authority” by Kaur, Singapore District Judge Shaiffudin Saruwan sentenced her to 33 months in jail for three charges of corruption and one charge of dealing with benefits of criminal conduct, Channel NewsAsia reported. A “high level of premeditation” was involved in the case, and steps were taken to avoid detection of the crime that went on for seven years, the judge said, according to the report.

He also ordered that the S$130,278.34 surrendered by Kaur to Singapore’s Corrupt Practices Investigation Bureau be forfeited to the agency.

Kaur, 57, who was working as a lead contract specialist for the U.S navy, was based at the Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center in Singapore. She was accused of taking bribes worth over S$130,000 from Leonard Glenn Francis, the Malaysian chief executive of Glenn Defense Marine Asia (GDMA), a company that provided goods and services for American ships in several countries in Asia. Kaur received the bribes in return for giving Francis confidential official information between 2006 and 2011, and helping his firm procure contracts from the U.S. Navy through more competitive bids.

Kaur had pleaded guilty to three corruption charges and one count of dealing with the benefits of her criminal activities on June 30, 2017, the Straits Times reported. She is planning to appeal.

Francis, who was known among U.S. Navy personnel as “Fat Leonard,” pleaded guilty to his offenses in the United States in 2015. He is currently in custody and faces up to 25 years in prison. He has agreed to forfeit $35 million in personal assets.

As many as 12 U.S. navy officials pleaded guilty in the United States over the case, Channel NewsAsia reported. The highest-ranking official involved, Rear Admiral Robert Gilbeau, was sentenced to 18-month jail term for making false statements to investigators, the report added.

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