Ex-Tampa Scientist Sentenced in NASA Fraud Case
He used money intended for research to go on an international vacation, pay for a car and buy groceries, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
TAMPA – A former Tampa scientists was sentenced to three years in federal prison for defrauding NASA and other federal agencies, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida said.
Akbar Fard, 54, formerly of Tampa, was also ordered to forfeit $ 1,472,082, proceeds that are traceable to of the offense. A federal jury found him guilty Feb. 9.
According to testimony and evidence presented at trial, Fard defrauded the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer programs of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Missile Defense Agency, and the U.S. Navy. He diverted for his personal benefit $1,472,082 that should have been used to research critical national research priorities related to spacecraft, satellites, and the protection of naval assets from fires. With the money, Fard went on an international vacation, paid for a car, funded his retirement, and bought retail items and groceries.
This case was investigated by NASA’s Office of the Inspector General, the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service.
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