UPDATE | Couple sentenced in Fort Gordon bribery scheme

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Monday, January 14, 2019

Anthony Roper, Audra Roper, Dwayne Fulton (not pictured), and Calvin Lawyer (not pictured) are involved in a federal case of an alleged bribery scheme.

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Dwayne Fulton, Anthony and Audra Roper have all been sentenced in a scheme that began in 2017.

Anthony Roper, guilty of Procurement Integrity Fraud, has been sentenced to five years behind bars, three years supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

Audra Roper, guilty of Accessory After the Fact, will not see time behind bars. She will face five years of probation.

Dwayne Fulton, charged with Conspiracy to Commit Fraud, Bribery, False Statements and Obstruction of Justice will also be behind bars for five years with three years of probation. He also faces a $250,000 fine.



Friday, May 4, 2018
News 12 @ 6 O'clock / NBC 26 at 7

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) – Six cases centered around Fort Gordon.

Five people including the Ropers have plead guilty to fraud.

The US Attorney’s Office says-- these cases involve bribery of public officials, illegal kickbacks, and illegal arrangements between the department of defense contractors and small businesses acting as "front" companies.

Anthony Roper was responsible for setting up jobs with contractors at first he pleaded not guilty to eleven charges.

But today, he changed his mind and took a plea deal. In exchange for his guilty plea he'll only be sentenced for one count of fraud.

His wife Audra also took a plea deal, she will be sentenced for one count of accessory after the fact.

Attorneys say she created phony invoices to cover up payments to her husband.

We're also learning more about 2 other cases involving a private contractor named Obradovich and the company he owned called military training solutions.

It was registered as a small business he would get contracts with Fort Gordon and have another large business do the work.

He would pay them but keep a percentage of the money for himself.
Attorneys say Calvin Lawyer and Dwayne Fulton were doing the same thing.

Anthony Roper faces a maximum of five years in prison and Audra Roper faces a maximum of one year in prison.



AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Anthony Roper and his wife Audra are now pleading guilty.

The two were in court Friday afternoon.

The Ropers are just two of the four people charged in connection with a bribery case involving Fort Gordon.

Anthony Roper is charged with conspiracy, three counts of bribery, four counts of false statements and one count of obstruction. Audra Roper is charged with conspiracy, false statements and obstruction.



Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Two people charged in connection with a bribery case involving Fort Gordon have entered not guilty pleas.

Audra and Anthony Roper have both also waived their arraignment hearing.

Our cameras were rolling back in 2015 when the Feds raided this army contracting company, called CREC. A year and a half later, we found they were the ones in the middle of a much larger investigation. News 12 NBC 26 dug deeper. We uncovered CREC received tens of millions of dollars in government contracts from 2008 up until 2015.

Anthony Roper is charged with conspiracy, three counts of bribery, four counts of false statements and one count of obstruction. Audra Roper, Anthony's wife, is charged with conspiracy, false statements and obstruction.



Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2017

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- A fourth person has now been charged in connection with a bribery case involving Fort Gordon.

Calvin Devear Lawyer has been charged with one count of conspiracy. He is a retired Colonel who served at Fort Gordon. Court documents state that before he retired, he started a business called CREC Group with a plan to obtain government contracts with the Army and other commercial work after he retired.

The charge says he knowingly and willfully used the company to bribe people responsible for awarding contracts, specifically Anthony Roper and his wife, Audra.

If convicted, Lawyer faces up to five years in prison.



News 12 NBC 26 at 6 O'clock / Tuesday, July 11, 2017

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- The alleged bribery scheme lasted almost a decade. The plan, the indictment states, to defraud the government of $20 million.

At the center of that indictment is a Fort Gordon Army Colonel, Anthony Roper, his wife, Audra Roper, along with the officer of a large defense contracting company, Dwayne Oswald Fulton. All three of them stood before a judge and pleaded not guilty.

Our cameras were rolling back in 2015 when the Feds raided this army contracting company, called CREC. A year and a half later, we found they were the ones in the middle of a much larger investigation. News 12 NBC 26 dug deeper. We uncovered CREC received tens of millions of dollars in government contracts from 2008 up until 2015.

A LinkedIn profile shows Fulton worked for Kratos, another government contractor. A press release dated back in 2008 shows Fulton worked as the Director of Advanced Telecom Group for Kratos. Fulton is charged with conspiracy and obstruction charges stemming from how the money was awarded Kratos.

In 2015, Kratos was given $64 million in government contracts. Fast forward to 2016, it received $95 million. This year, when a grand jury indicted the Ropers and Fulton on the bribery scheme, that dropped to $26 million as of June.

The Judge set bond at $5,000 for the Roper's and Fulton.


Friday, June 9, 2017

Augusta, Ga (WRDW/WAGT) --- A federal indictment provides details into allegations of bribery against a Fort Gordon colonel, his wife and another government contractor and more than $20 million dollars in government contracts.

According to the indictment, part of Colonel Anthony Roper's job was overseeing the building and modernizing of the Army's communications networks. The government believes Roper used his position to help get cash bribes in exchange for Army contracts for other companies.

Anthony Roper is charged with conspiracy, three counts of bribery, four counts of false statements and one count of obstruction. Audra Roper, Anthony's wife, is charged with conspiracy, false statements and obstruction. Dwayne Fulton, an ex-defense company contractor, is charged with conspiracy and obstruction.

In the indictment, federal agents believe the conspiracy to defraud the U.S. Army goes back to at least 2008. Anthony Roper, Audra Roper and Dwayne Fulton "knowingly devise[d] a scheme to defraud the U.S. Army... to obtain money... by means of materially false and fraudulent pretenses," the government claims. The indictment also lists a person known only by the initials "CDL". CDL is a retired Army colonel and established the Communications, Research, Engineering and Consultants, LLC Group or CREC Group. CDL along with other co-conspirators would give bribes to Anthony Roper and other public officials in exchange for Army contracts, the indictment says. CDL, Fulton and others would give fake documents and information the Army, Small Business Administration and government contractors as well as fraudulently use employees from other government contractors to do the work.

On three separate occasions, $25,000; $20,000 and $15,000 was deposited from CREC Group's account to Anthony Roper's account between December 2012 and December 2014, the indictment says.

Here is a timeline of the allegations:

December 2008 and December 2015, Roper would deposit bribe money into his personal bank account

November 2007 - December 2015, Roper gave CDL and Dwayne Fulton confidential information about the Army and other government contracting companies.

September 2012 - September 2015, Anthony Roper signed approvals to make sure CREC Group with the primary government contractor on certain Army contracts.

February 2008 - at least 2016, CDL and Fulton falsely informed the Army that CREC employees were doing work on certain Army contracts.

April 2009 - 2016, CDL and Fulton submitted false applications and documents to the Army and Small Business Adminstration.

September 2009 - December 2015, Anthony and Audra Roper provided the government false invoices in the name of Quadar Group claiming work they never did.

2008 - 2015, Anthony Roper falsified Office of Government Ethics forms related to any income, salary, fees or gives that may be prohibited.


Thursday, June 8, 2017

Augusta, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - An Army colonel stationed at Fort Gordon is indicted on his alleged role in a bribery and kickback scheme.

The U.S. Department of Justice says Anthony Roper and his wife, Audra Roper, conspired to solicit cash bribes in exchanging for rigging the award of over $20 million in U.S. contracts to selected individuals and companies. A government contractor, Dwayne Fulton, was also indicted.

The indictment further alleges that in an attempt to hide their bribery and fraud schemes, the Defendants attempted to obstruct an official investigation into their criminal conduct.

Colonel Roper was charged with one count of conspiracy, three counts of bribery, four counts of false statements and one count of obstruction, with a maximum sentence of 85 years in prison and a $1.75 million fine.

Audra Roper was charged with one count of conspiracy, one count of false statements and one count of obstruction, with a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison and a $750,000 fine.

Fulton was charged with one count of conspiracy and one count of obstruction, with a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $500,000 fine.