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Corrupt Marine Sergeant Gets Five Years

SAN DIEGO (CN) - A Marine Corps sergeant was sentenced Friday to five years in federal prison for taking $150,000 in bribes from military contractors in Iraq.

Gilbert Mendez, 37, of Camp Lejeune, N.C., took bribes through his friend, Francisco Mungia, who was convicted of federal charges in Hawaii, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Mendez gave "Company 1" $1 million in Pentagon contracts after taking $90,000 in bribes through Mungia, the U.S. attorney said.

He gave "Company 2," another defense contractor, $1.7 million in defense contracts after taking a $20,000 bribe from it, and agreed to give a third contractor a contract for a $50,000 bribe, prosecutors said.

Mendez is the tenth Marine from Camp Fallujah convicted of fraud during "Operation Iraqi Freedom."

He pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

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