Pendleton Marine, Wife Charged With Iraq Scam
Updated at 2:16 PM PDT on Thursday, Mar 4, 2010
A Marine Corps captain and his wife have been charged with skimming $1.75 million from government contracts in Iraq.
The U.S. attorney's office says Eric and Janet Schmidt of Murietta were charged Thursday in Riverside with felony counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and filing a false tax return.
The Camp Pendleton officer and his wife could each face up to 23 years in federal prison.
Federal prosecutors claim the Schmidts arranged for a local company to obtain government contracts while the Marine was serving as a logistics officer in Iraq in 2008.
Authorities say the contracts often were filled with too few or inferior products purchased in the U.S. -- with Schmidt pocketing the difference.
A call to his attorney, Janet Sherman, wasn't immediately returned.
Published at 2:03 PM PDT on Mar 4, 2010
Copyright Associated Press