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Former NGO official gets jail term for bribery in US

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Washington, May 25 (MNN) A former non-governmental organization official was sentenced to 40 months in prison by a US court for bribery in exchange for sensitive procurement information, the Department of Justice said.

The accused was charged with paying bribes to NGO officers in exchange for sensitive procurement information related to NGO contracts funded in part by the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

According to court documents, from January 2011 through December 2016, Ernest Halilov, 43, a citizen of Turkmenistan, coordinated a bid-rigging scheme to bid on contracts procured by NGOs and funded by USAID, to support the agency’s response to various humanitarian crises.

These contracts were for the procurement of food and supplies that would ultimately be provided to those affected by various humanitarian crises, including refugees displaced by the conflict in Syria.

Specifically, Halilov bribed two NGO officers in order to obtain confidential procurement information, such as bid evaluation information, specifications and internal vendor rankings.

In turn, Halilov would provide this information to his preferred companies in exchange for kickbacks, ensuring that the companies had an advantage over other bidders, thus increasing their ability to win NGO-procured contracts.

Halilov also admitted that he instructed a witness to lie to law enforcement agents and destroy emails related to the investigation.

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