ATLANTA (AP) _ A former Lockheed Corp. executive was sentenced Thursday to 18 months in prison and fined $125,000 for bribing an Egyptian official to help close the sale of three cargo planes.

Suleiman A. Nassar, a 58-year-old Syrian, pleaded guilty in July.

``I apologize for what happened,'' he told U.S. District Judge Marvin H. Shoob. ``I regret my role. ... I am willing to serve and get back with my life.''

Nassar was Lockheed's vice president of marketing for the Middle East and North Africa from 1987 to 1990.

Prosecutors contend he was behind a scheme in which Lockheed paid more than $1.2 million to Dr. Leila I. Takla, an Egyptian legislator, to smooth the way for the company to sell three of its C-130 planes to Egypt.

Lockheed, which has since merged with Martin Marietta to form Lockheed Martin Corp., made $12.4 million off the deal. The company pleaded guilty in January to conspiracy and paid a $24.8 million fine.