Sunday, August 1, 2010

Even body armor might not spare this contractor

FOR SOME CHOICE summer reading, here's a vote for the published accounts of a trial on Long Island in which a former defense contractor has been accused of so many bizarre personal expenses that they could qualify for something much greater than garden variety greed. The defendant's name is David H. Brooks, described by the New York Times as the former chief executive and chairman of DHB Industries, a body-armor company "enriched by United States military contracts."

Well, yes, and by the looks of things, Brooks didn't too badly for himself, either.

In fairness, Brooks, 55, had his moments as a family man. Among his alleged self-serving payouts from the company till were said to be such things as a $100,000 gold belt buckle and $300,000 in writing pens! But according to the prosecutor, Brooks, who left the company in 2006, staged a a multimillion-dollar bat mitzvah party for his daughter, purchased pornographic videos for his son, plastic surgery for his wife, a burial plot for his mother, prostitutes for his employes and board members.. Oh, he's also accused of a $190 million stock fraud scheme that inflated the value of the company stock just before he sold his shares in 2004. Altogether he's accused of expensing $6 million for his personal needs.

The Times reported that Brooks' lawyers saw nothing amiss in hiring prostitutes on the company dole. They called it a legitimate business expense "if Mr. Brooks thought such services could motivate his employes and make them more productive." That's one way of putting it. But apparently it wasn't enough to keep the company effectively amused. It changed its name to Point Blank Solutions, went to Florida this year and declared bankruptcy.

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