Felony convictions for corrupt naval officers vacated after prosecutorial misconduct; they get $100 fines instead

A bunch of crooked naval officers are off the hook thanks to prosecutorial misconduct. God bless America.

U.S. District Judge Janis Sammartino called the misconduct "outrageous" and agreed to allow the four men to plead guilty to a misdemeanor and pay a $100 fine each. Last year after the trial, Sammartino had ruled the lead federal prosecutor committed "flagrant misconduct" by withholding information from defense lawyers but said at the time that it was not enough to dismiss the case. …

The officers — former Capts. David Newland, James Dolan and David Lausman and former Cmdr. Mario Herrera — were previously convicted by a federal jury on various counts of accepting bribes from foreign defense contractor Leonard Francis, and his company, Glenn Defense Marine Asia, or GDMA.

On Wednesday three of them pleaded guilty to one count each of disclosing information to Francis, and Lausman pleaded guilty to a charge of destruction of government property, for smashing a hard drive with a hammer.

The good news is that the filth was exposed. We know about the service members who accepted a half million dollars in cash and finally admitted to *mumbles* in return for $100 fines. We know about the prosecutors who lied to make them look worse in court and withheld evidence that might have tilted jurors away from conviction. We know about the military procurement bureacracy around Fat Leonard, where vast sums of money sloshed around the leisure-filled lives of dozens of officers.

The bad news is that, even with all the generous contributions from abroad, we still get to pay for it.