Army Contract Fraudster Bahram Bordbar was Generous to GOP (and Obama)

A Yorba Linda man, who copped in federal court to improperly and fraudulently receiving about $320,000 from a U.S. Army contract, is a longtime generous campaign contributor to the likes of Rep. Ed Royce (R-Fullerton), Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin), Sen. John McCain (R-Arizona), the National Republican Senatorial Committee and other GOP causes and candidates.

Bahram “Barry” Bordbar also gave to another Barry.

Barack Obama.

Bordbar, who owns Prototype Engineering and Manufacturing Inc. in Gardena, pleaded guilty in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles on Aug. 1 to a federal charge of making false statements involving aircraft, admitting “that his fraudulent conduct led to him improperly receiving approximately $320,000 from the Army,” according to Thom Mrozek, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in LA. Prototype had a contract to overhaul and repair linear actuators that were used on the Army’s AH-64-A Apache helicopter, but that pact did not authorize the company to repair DC motors used in the linear actuators unless it received specific authorization from the military branch, Mrozek said.

According to a plea agreement filed with the court, Prototype used an outside contractor to repair 105 DC motors without authorization, and those repaired motors were installed into overhauled linear actuators that were delivered to the Army.

Bordbar also pleaded guilty to one count of aiding and abetting in the filing of a false tax return related to an employee’s tax return. Bordbar paid the employee $100,000 that he said was a gift and that he would pay the taxes, so the recipient did not report the money as income on a federal tax return. Bordbar has agreed to pay the Internal Revenue Service more than $28,000 to pay the employee’s back taxes.

Judge John F. Walter is scheduled to sentence Bordbar on October 16, when the 62-year-old faces up to 13 years in federal prison.

Online election records indicate Iran-born Bordbar has contributed to U.S. campaigns since 2002, although there is nothing listed for the 2016 election cycle. That first year of ’02 his only donation ($1,000) went to the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC), a PAC that aims to get Republicans elected to the Senate.

The NRSC is by far the largest recipient of Bordbar contributions over the years, with the online records showing he gave a total of $37,740 to the PAC from the 2002 through 2014 cycles. It may have been $1,000 more, but the 2012 listing shows a contribution for that amount on Aug. 15, 2011, but then minus-$1,000 the following month on Sept. 9. That apparently has nothing to do with the federal indictment of Bordbar, which did not come down until July 11, 2017.

The entities after the NRSC that received the most in total contributions from Bordbar over the years are: the Mitt Romney presidential campaign ($16,000) and Rep. Ed Royce, who would be of interest to the donor for two reasons: The veteran congressman’s district includes Yorba Linda, where Bordbar resides, and Royce currently chairs the powerful House Armed Services Committee.

Other notable recipients of Bordbar contributions include John McCain, who has received a total of $3,600 for both presidential and Senate campaigns, Barack Obama, who got $1,650 total for Senate and presidential runs, and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, who lapped up $1,500 to stay in Congress.

Bordbar could not have possibly known in 2010 and 2012 that the $1,000 total he gave to the Mo Brooks for Congress campaign might be parlayed into influence over a future U.S. senator, could he? Representative Brooks (R-Alabama) announced this past May that he will seek the U.S. Senate seat that Jeff Sessions abandoned to become Donald Trump’s beleaguered Attorney General.

Other notable Bordbar recipients include: former U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole ($1,000); SarahPAC, which Sarah Palin formed after she resigned as Alaska governor in 2009 ($500); and conservative commentator Star Parker, who got $500 from Bordbar for her unsuccessful 37th congressional district run in 2010. That seat was won by the ethically challenged Laura Richardson (D-Long Beach); the boundaries have since been redrawn and Karen Bass (D-LA) now represents the congressional district.

Rounding out the list of contribution recipients are Bill Jones, the former California Secretary of State who made an unsuccessful run for then-U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer’s seat in 2004, and the Republican Central Committee of Los Angeles County. They received $500 apiece from Bordbar.

The Bordbar family has not only been generous to politicians. The Orange County Register society page in February 2014 reported on the businessman’s wife and daughter, Molly and Sara Bordbar respectively, participating in the Yorba Linda chapter of the National Charity League’s “Star Spangled Fashion” spring fashion show that raised money for active military families.

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