Monday, February 26, 2018

Former Official Will Cooperate With Investigators Probing Scheme To Funnel Money From State Dept To Kerry's Daughter

Well, this is a surprise, said no one.

Ethan Barton Investigative Reporter
10:27 PM 02/21/2018

A former senior Peace Corps official agreed to cooperate with any law enforcement investigations surrounding a scheme that funneled millions of Department of State dollars to a nonprofit founded and run by former Secretary of State John Kerry’s daughter, recently published court documents show.

Warren “Buck” Buckingham agreed to cooperate as a condition of an agreement with the Washington, D.C., U.S. Attorney’s Office that would keep him from facing prosecution for a related illegal lobbying charge, court documents filed Thursday and made public Tuesday show. (RELATED: Former Peace Corps Official Who Steered Contracts To John Kerry’s Daughter May Avoid Prosecution)

Also as part of the agreement, Buckingham admitted to the charge that he lobbied his former Peace Corps colleagues to help his employer, Seed Global Health, secure a $6.4 million State Department-funded contract extension around September 2015.

Buckingham also helped Seed – a nonprofit founded and run by Kerry’s daughter Vanessa Kerry – secure it’s original nearly $3 million contract, which was also funded with State Department money, in September 2012. Buckingham soon left the Peace Corps while under investigation for improperly hiring an employee and subsequently sending the official lewd emails.

Officials from both agencies met with Vanessa and arranged the scheme that would funnel State Department money to Seed through the Peace Corps, previous Daily Caller News Foundation investigations show in detail. (EXCLUSIVE: John Kerry’s State Department Funneled MILLIONS To His Daughter’s Nonprofit)

Additionally, John Kerry’s State Department hired Buckingham as a consultant soon after the former Peace Corps official helped Vanessa’s nonprofit secure its first contract.

Buckingham agreed to cooperate with “any ongoing investigation” the Attorney’s Office or other law enforcement agencies conducts related to the money funneling scheme, court documents said. He agreed to “disclose all factual information” surrounding the scheme, including “any document, record or other tangible evidence.”

Buckingham also agreed to “make himself available for interviews or testimony,” including testifying before a grand jury or in trials and identifying other witnesses who may have information related to the investigation, court documents said.

Seed hired Buckingham around the time the original contract was expiring to “manage [the] relationship with external partners such as the Peace Corps,” the court documents said. Buckingham contacted Peace Corps “to review questions posed by Peace Corps regarding the renewal of” Seed’s contract.

Buckingham was notified in September 2015 that his “communications with Peace Corps about the cooperative agreement were potential violations of conflict of interest laws” and subsequently stopped talking with the agency about the contract, court documents said.

The documents only refer to Buckingham’s work with “Foundation A,” but significant details make it clear the organization is Seed.

First, the timing, value and funding source of the arrangement identified in the court documents were unique to Seed.

Second, the court documents note that the State Department secretary in February 2013 “was the father of the co-founder and CEO of Foundation A.”

Third, the court document shows that the foundation in question hired Buckingham around the same time as Seed.

Fourth, Buckingham lobbied the Peace Corps for Seed’s contract extension, TheDCNF previously revealed.

Neither Seed nor Buckingham’s lawyer immediately returned a request for comment. The U.S. Attorney’s Office declined to comment.

Thank You Mr Barton and the DC.

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