Businessman Says Consultant Did Little for His Money
Apr. 07, 1989
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) _ A businessman charged in the Pentagon corruption scandal acknowledged Friday that a private consultant his firm had hired for $150,000 did nothing in return for the initial installments on the contract.
Dale Schnittjer, a former vice president of Teledyne Electronics of Newbury Park, Calif., made the admission under cross-examination in U.S. District Court as the defense wound up its case.
Schnittjer and two other former Teledyne executives, George Kaub and Eugene Sullivan, are charged with bribery, conspiracy and wire fraud in the first trial stemming from the federal government's ''Ill Wind'' investigation, in which authorities are looking into fraud and kickbacks at the Pentagon.
U.S. District Judge Richard Williams dismissed the jury at mid-day, instructing them to return Monday to hear closing arguments before the deliberations begin. The trial began Monday.
Schnittjer, the final defendant to take the stand, said he never knew that William Parkin, a private consultant Teledyne Electronics had hired in October 1985, had paid bribes to a Navy engineer for confidential information about a $24 million contract for hand-held radar equipment. Sullivan and Kaub also said they were kept in the dark about Parkin's activities.
Parkin and Stuart Berlin, the engineer, are among those who pleaded guilty in the case before the trial began. They testified for the government.
Schnittjer, who joined Teledyne Electronics in the summer of 1987, around the time the company was awarded the radar contract, said Parkin's deal with Teledyne called for him to receive $10,000 in up-front month.
If Teledyne won the contract, the company agreed to sign a sub-contract with Parkin for $150,000. ''We was supposed to work for the sub-contract,'' Schnittjer said.
Under questioning by Assistant U.S. attorney Jack Hanley, however, Schnittjer acknowledged that Parkin did not produce any work in exchange for the roughly $18,000 he received in early 1988.
Schnittjer said, however, that Teledyne officials had discussed having Parkin complete a report on avionics.
Parkin's payments were stopped after the government's investigation was made public in June 1988.
Parkin's contract was terminated ''when we learned that Parkin didn't appear to be what he was,'' Schnittjer said.
In a related matter, Joseph E. Hill, 76, of Mineola, N.Y., was sentenced to one year of unsupervised probation and fined $20,000 for making illegal campaign contributions to congressional campaigns. Hill, a private consultant, pleaded guilty to the four misdemeanor counts earlier this year.
He has admitted that he channeled corporate contributions to the campaigns of unwitting congressional candidates as part of a scheme organized by several former executives of Unisys Corp. Hill is one of about a dozen people who have pleaded guilty in the Pentagon investigation.