Former San Diego Navy Employee, Defense Contractor Indicted for Bribery Scheme

Federal courthouse
Federal courthouse in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Stone

A former San Diego-based Navy civilian employee who prosecutors say took bribes in the form of free meals and tickets to major sporting events from a defense contractor has been indicted by a federal grand jury, prosecutors announced Tuesday.

The indictment charges the ex-Naval Information Warfare Center employee, 63-year-old James Soriano, and the owner of Virginia-based defense contractor Intellipeak Solutions, Phillip Flores, 52.

Flores allegedly bribed Soriano with tickets to the 2018 World Series, the 2019 Super Bowl and free dinners at various San Diego-area restaurants, including De Medici Cucina, the University Club and Bluewater Boathouse Grill.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office alleges that in return for those bribes, Soriano “steered millions of dollars in contracts to Intellipeak” and let Flores draft procurement documents for contracts.

In a bid to hide the scheme, Soriano allegedly falsified government paperwork, while Flores falsely claimed Intellipeak had done a majority of the work on the awarded contracts, according to prosecutors.

The case is closely related to a separate case involving another ex-employee of the Naval Information Warfare Center.

That employee, Dawnell Parker, took “thousands of dollars in free meals” from defense contractors in exchange for her advocacy on the contractors’ behalf as they competed for government contracts.

Parker pleaded guilty last month to a conspiracy to commit bribery charge.

City News Service contributed to this article.