Former Navy commander pleads guilty in Singapore scandal

Kapaun 21st current or ex-Navy official charged in Francis case

Kapaun lied on his application for a security clearance.
  • Kapaun lied on his application for a security clearance.

Former United States Navy Commander David Kapaun pleaded guilty in Hawaii yesterday (June 6) to lying about his relationship with Leonard G. Francis, the Singapore-based defense contractor at the center of a long-running bribery and fraud scandal.

Appearing before a Hawaii magistrate judge, Kapaun admitted that when he was deputy chief of staff for Special Operations Command Pacific in 2015, he lied on his application for a security clearance by not revealing the gifts he had received Francis, owner of Glenn Defense Marine Asia, which provided services to the Navy, and got confidential logistical information in exchange for lavish and sexual gifts.

Kapaun is the 21st current or former Navy official charged in the bribery investigation. Eleven have pleaded guilty and ten cases are still pending. Five executives of the Singapore company, along with the company itself, have pleaded guilty.

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The headline here refers to this man as a "former" Navy officer. Reported "elsewhere" was the fact that he served for 25 years, and retired from the Navy. So, normal usage would be to refer to him as a retired Navy commander. Oh, as such, his cushy retirement benefit is not in danger of being forfeited. He may do some prison time, but he might just avoid that if he ratted out some others.

Visduh: The U.S. Attorney's office called him a "former" officer, so I used that terminology, too. A number of ex-officers have been nailed in this scandal. I do not know, but I would guess they get their retirement. In the private sector, retirement can't be taken away from someone, no matter what the act, I believe. I am only fairly sure of that, and the rule may have been changed since the last time i was writing about the subject. Best, Don Bauder

So, the US Atty's office doesn't know "retired" from "ex-". Oh, well.

Visduh: The U.S. Attorney's office does a very good job reporting on these matters. I suspect there was a reason they used "former." Best, Don Bauder

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