Jun 25, 2010. John Webster Warwick, a Virginia Beach resident, was sentenced to 37 months in prison for his role in a conspiracy to pay bribes to former Panamanian government officials to secure maritime contracts. Warwick pleaded guilty to a one-count indictment charging him with conspiring to make corrupt payments to foreign government officials for the purpose of securing business for Ports Engineering Consultants Corporation in violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Under the FCPA, it is a crime to pay or offer to pay anything of value to a foreign government official in order to obtain or retain business.
According to court documents, Warwick, Charles Jumet and others conspired to pay money secretly to Panamanian government officials for awarding contracts to PECC to maintain lighthouses and buoys along Panama’s waterway. In December 1997, the Panamanian government awarded PECC a no-bid 20-year concession. Upon receipt of the concession, Warwick, Jumet and others authorized corrupt payments to be made to the Panamanian government officials. In total, Warwick, Jumet and others caused corrupt payments of more than $ 200,000 to be paid to the Panamanian government officials.