Woman pleads guilty in RI in Navy kickbacks scheme

Woman pleads guilty in Rhode Island in Navy kickbacks scheme worth millions

Associated Press

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) -- The girlfriend of the admitted leader of a kickback scheme that cost the U.S. Navy millions has pleaded guilty to theft of government property.

Mary O'Rourke entered her plea before U.S. District Judge Mary Lisi on Thursday morning.

Her boyfriend, Ralph Mariano, is due to plead guilty to conspiracy, theft of government property and tax evasion later Thursday. Their pleas will mean all six people charged in the case have pleaded guilty.

Prosecutors have said Mariano used his position at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center to add money to contracts held by corrupt contractors, who then funneled money back to Mariano and others.

O'Rourke's lawyer said outside court his client is relieved that it's over.

She is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 5.

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