Former ICE analyst sentenced in travel fund scheme
EL PASO, Texas (AP) — A former Intelligence analyst for Immigration and Customs Enforcement was sentenced to prison Wednesday for his role in an alleged embezzlement scheme, and federal prosecutors announced another former analyst and a former agency contractor have pleaded guilty to related charges.
Ahmed Adil Abdallat, 64, was sentenced to 12 months in prison for illegal use of a diplomatic passport and submitting fake travel receipts to collect about $50,000. Most of the money was allegedly sent to former ICE intelligence chief James Woosley.
Former Intelligence Research Specialist William Korn and former ICE contractor Stephen Henderson await sentencing after previously pleading guilty to fraudulently collecting about $50,000 each in travel expenses. Henderson worked as lead intelligence analyst for a private company under contract with ICE.
Mary Stillinger, Abdallat's lawyer, said that during an interview with federal investigators after his arrest he identified both Korn and Henderson in photographs and agreed to testify against Woosley and his assistant Lateisha Rollerson. Stillinger said that in order to underscore Abdallat's cooperation with authorities in hopes of a shorter sentence.
"Woosley is a con man, a mysterious man who manages to talk otherwise honest government employees into committing crimes," Stillinger said in court during Abdallat's sentence hearing. "Woosley and (Lateisha) Rollerson ran this machine and pulled in some other people."
Abdallat was sentenced to three concurrent sentences of 12 months and a day. Abdallat was arrested last February and is expected to be released this week. Upon hearing his sentence, Aballat apologized to federal judge Frank Montalvo.
"I am sorry for these shameful conduct and actions, the director of intelligence talked me into it," Abdallat said.
A phone listing for Woosley couldn't be found. He was put on administrative leave following Abdallat's arrest but hasn't been charged.
A Jordanian national and a retired member of that country's airforce, Abdallat had been working for ICE for 15 years before his arrest.
Henderson, 61, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Washington D.C. to Conversion of Government money. He was charged for submitting fake receipts for travel and lodging as part of a scheme in which Korn an unnamed ICE supervisor and his assistant were involved. At one point, Henderson asked for a $6,000 advance that was used to buy a boat that was later put to the name of the ICE intelligence supervisor. During the time the scheme was conducted, between November 2007 and August 2009, Henderson lived at the supervisor's house in Virginia.
Korn, 53, was a research specialist with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and, according to court documents, embezzled more than $50,000 by fraudulently collecting travel expenses between October 2008 and June 2009. A press release by the Department of Justice says that Korn was living at his supervisor's house in Virginia while collecting hotel rates for lodging during the period he lived there. He received about $3.000 per month more than to which he was entitled.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) press secretary Barbara Gonzalez she could not comment because it is an ongoing investigation and did not immediately respond to questions regarding Woosley's work relation to Henderson and Korn.
U.S. Department of Justice spokesman Bill Miller declined to comment on whether the supervisor is Woosley because it is an ongoing investigation.
The FBI in Washington did not immediately reply to request for information on the matter.