Mastermind of $18M Navy kickbacks to learn fate

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The mastermind of a 15-year kickback scheme that cost the Navy $18 million is scheduled to learn his fate Friday.

Ralph M. Mariano is set to be sentenced in federal court in Providence. He pleaded guilty in May to conspiracy, theft of government property and tax evasion.

Mariano was working as a civilian at Naval Sea Systems Command headquarters in Washington and living in South Arlington, Va., when he was charged in 2011. He used his position to authorize payments to a Georgia-based contractor, which would then give him and others kickbacks. Six people pleaded guilty in the case.

Prosecutors have recommended a prison sentence of 10 years and one month, the maximum allowed under sentencing guidelines. Mariano's lawyer asked that he receive less time in prison and community service.

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