Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Crooked Republican military contractor goes on trial

A few years ago I first noted the story of David H. Brooks here, here, and here. Brooks is a war profiteering crook who used his blood money to push his Republican agenda, including a big donation to George F. Allen and a payoff to the National Republican Senatorial Committee. Now, three years later, Brooks has finally been put on trial for his crimes:
The former head of a military contractor is on trial in Long Island for fraud, having allegedly used company funds to buy porn for his son, a burial plot for his mother, prostitutes for his employees and a ruby-encrusted American flag belt buckle worth $100,000.

David H. Brooks, the founder and former chief of body armor manufacturer DHB, is facing charges of fraud, insider trading and using millions of dollars in corporate cash to fund, as the New York Times puts it, "personal extravagance."

Using the company coffers -- which were flush with Pentagon money -- Brooks allegedly bought gifts for his family, including pornographic videos for his son, plastic surgery for his wife and textbooks for his daughter. He also bought luxury cars, country club memberships and a stable full of racehorses.
Brooks is probably most notorious for his daughter's bat mitzvah, financed with the proceeds from selling defective body armor that resulted in the deaths of several U.S. servicemen.
And then there's the belt buckle, which prosecutors have reportedly been waving around in the courtroom: $100,000 worth of diamonds, rubies and sapphires in the shape of the American flag.

And there's more: Brooks spent $10 million on his daughter's bat mitzvah, hiring 50 Cent, Tom Petty and Aerosmith to perform. The leather-bound invitations cost $40,000 alone.
Is there anything more quintessentially Republican than using political donations to obtain a contract to sell defective body armor to the U.S. military and then using the proceeds from that extremely lucrative contact to finance an extravagant lifestyle of extraordinary tackiness?

How many more David H. Brooks are out there, unprosecuted? The Defense Department cannot account for $8.7 billion out of $9.1 billion it was given to pay for Iraqi reconstruction efforts! Where did all that money go?! Why aren't there more prosecutions for corruption? How can we trust the process when it is becoming clear that DOJ investigations are being deliberately blown in order to ensure that corporate criminals escape prosecution?

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