3 charged in presidential helicopter scheme
COLUMBIA, S.C. - Three men are facing charges in a fraud scheme involving a helicopter fleet that transports the president.
U.S. Attorney Thomas G. Walker said in a news release Thursday that Craig Kolhagen, Dennis Pennington and James Bowling had been indicted on charges including wire fraud and procurement fraud.
Kolhagen is a Marine who does contracting for Marine Helicopter Squadron One, which provides presidential transportation. Pennington and Bowling head up Valour LLC, an Abbeville, Louisiana-based defense contractor.
Prosecutors say Kolhagen illegally gave Pennington and Bowling information about a maintenance contract, then worked with them to inflate a bid proposal by hundreds of thousands of dollars so they could submit an attractive bid to a Camp Lejeune, North Carolina-based committee.
Valour ultimately lost the bid. Court documents did not list attorneys for the men.