Former academy official indicted Navy contracts are questioned

November 14, 1990|By Kelly Gilbert | Kelly Gilbert,Evening Sun Staff

A federal grand jury today indicted the U.S. Naval Academy's former public works officer, Capt. James E. Weston, on conspiracy, bribery and obstruction of justice charges for allegedly accepting numerous home appliances and machinery from an Annapolis contractor in return for awarding him Navy construction contracts worth at least $3.7 million.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jane F. Barrett also charged the Naval Academy's former civilian construction director, Eugene E. Hook, with one conspiracy count in a criminal information document filed today in U.S. District Court in Baltimore.

The filing of the criminal information, rather than a formal indictment, suggests that Hook, of Cumberland, has agreed to cooperate with the government.

Weston and Hook had been under investigation since March 1989 by the FBI, Naval Investigative Services and federal prosecutors. Barrett said the probe is continuing. Sources have said the investigation has broadened to a variety of contractors who did business at the academy with Weston and Hook.

Weston, of Henderson, Nev., retired Oct. 1, 1989, well after the corruption probe began. Hook retired in 1988.

Court documents allege that Weston approved or recommended preferred treatment for Annapolis contractor Carroll R. Dunton, of Dunton Construction Co., on at least two Navy contracts in return for a washing machine and dryer, five air conditioners, a dishwasher, a trash compactor, a lawn tractor and a generator worth more than $10,000 in all.

Hook, the criminal information said, solicited many of those items on Weston's behalf.

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