Image courtesy of Scott/Flickr.

Two former executives at a Houston-based supply firm pleaded guilty Friday to fraud charges for their role in a kick back scheme tied to oil projects in Latin America.

The U.S. Department of Justice said Franklin Marsan, 51, and Eduardo Betancourt, 48, both of Spring, Texas, each pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.

According to the plea agreements, Marsan and Betancourt worked for a Texas-based supply company that paid third-party sales agents to promote and sell its products to customers outside the United States.

Marsan and Betancourt ran the company’s Latin American operations from offices located in Houston.

As part of their guilty pleas, Marsan and Betancourt admitted that, from at least 2008 until at least March 2011, they received kickbacks from commissions the third-party sales agents earned for sales in several Latin American countries.

Marsan and Betancourt admitted that they received kickbacks totaling at least $150,000, mostly in cash,  and that they “actively concealed” the payments from the company.

Both men will be sentenced on July 1, 2016, by U.S. District Judge Melinda Harmon of the Southern District of Texas, who accepted also accepted their plea agreements last Friday.

As part of their plea agreements, Marsan and Betancourt agreed to pay restitution to their former employer.


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