U.S. Department of State employee Kenneth Apple, a member of the Provincial Reconstruction Team, was supposed to be using acquired funds to aid the war-impoverished Iraqi citizens in 2009. The PRT consists of military personnel, diplomats, and agricultural experts to stabilize Iraq’s infrastructure and improve its economy. Instead, agricultural expert Apple used the funds to help himself and his son, according to an FBI report.
Hillary Clinton took office as Secretary of State in January 2009.
Apple had oversight of multi-million-dollar contracts for reconstruction aid, but instead used his authority to illegally steer $2 million in contracts for micro-dairies to a shell company located in Montana. Micro-dairies are small, mobile dairy farms, a field in which the company has no experience with. Conveniently, the company, Xtreme Global Logistics Solutions (XGLS), is 50% owned by Apple’s son, Jonathan Apple.
Jonathan Apple earned approximately $230,000 in profit from the awarded contract, after producing falsifying information to U.S. government officials about the company’s experience and capabilities. The dairy devices were never even commercially distributed. This scheme is all thanks to Jonathan Apple’s father.
“We uncovered information that the awarding of the $2 million micro-dairy contracts was not conducted in an appropriate manner,” said Special Agent Jeff Pollack, one of the agents who investigated the case from the FBI’s Washington Field Office. Pollack’s statements can be read below:
“Apple had the ability to influence the awarding of contracts He wanted to funnel money to his son. The opportunity was right in front of him, and he took it. [Micro-dairies] can even be used in the desert on a slab of concrete. Housed inside a storage container is equipment that can process milk into cheese and yogurt. The idea was to provide food and create jobs for the Iraqis.”
“The Iraqis were all for this,” said Special Agent Josh Lovett, a member of the federal investigative team. “They put up a substantial amount of money to get these micro-dairy systems and to train their people to use them… There was actually a company in Iraq that could have done this work. And this contract could have helped them. But it never happened because of the fraud.”
According to the FBI report:
Apple was indicted in December 2015 for wire fraud, conspiracy to defraud the U.S., obstruction of justice, and making false statements. In July 2016, a federal jury in Virginia found him guilty on eight of nine charges. Evidence at trial showed that the micro-dairy units did not meet Iraqi Ministry of Health requirements, which was Apple’s responsibility.
Last month, Apple was sentenced to 50 months in prison and ordered to pay approximately $2 million in restitution and forfeit more than $550,000. In November 2015, Apple’s son pleaded guilty to his role in the scheme and cooperated with authorities, testifying against his father in court.
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