Ex-officers of NM-based defense contracting firm face prison

ALBUQUERQUE (AP) – Two former officers of a New Mexico-based defense contracting firm have pleaded guilty to criminal charges related to wartime rebuilding projects in Iraq.

Federal prosecutors say 66-year-old Neal Kasper and his 49-year-old wife, Tiffany White, were involved in a scheme to solicit and accept kickbacks in return for favorable treatment in awarding subcontracts.

Kasper pleaded guilty to wire fraud and conspiracy to solicit and accept kickbacks charges while White pleaded guilty to wire fraud and tax charges.

The couple was indicted in February 2012 for conspiring to defraud the government of more than $5 million.

Prosecutors say Kasper is facing up to 20 years in prison on the wire fraud charge and five years on the kickback conspiracy charge. White will be sentenced to up to six months in prison.

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