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British contractor agrees to plead guilty to fraud conspiracy in Iraqi reconstruction case

A British contractor has agreed to plead guilty to wire fraud conspiracy in a deal to supply vehicles to Iraqi police during U.S.-led reconstruction efforts.

The U.S. Department of Justice said Monday that APTx Vehicle Systems Ltd. agreed to a $1 million criminal fine.

Officials say APTx was to receive $5.7 million as a subcontractor in an August 2004 deal to procure 51 vehicles for the Iraqi Police Authority. They say in 2005 the company tried to draw down the letters of credit it was paid with by claiming the vehicles were ready to ship to Iraq even though they hadn't been built.

Massachusetts businessman and APTx representative Benjamin Kafka pleaded guilty in 2009 to concealing his knowledge of the scheme.

APTx attorneys haven't returned emails sent Monday requesting comment.

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