Slidell businessman sentenced to 10 months for role in Afghanistan kickback scheme

A businessman whom a Louisiana senator fought to have released from captivity overseas has been sentenced to 10 months in federal prison for taking kickbacks from a subcontractor on a military construction project in Afghanistan.

Elton McCabe III of Slidell, La., pleaded guilty in May to a conspiracy charge.

He worked in Afghanistan for an American company that provided construction services to the U.S. military. Federal prosecutors say he awarded a $3.2 million subcontract to an alleged co-conspirator's company in 2009 in exchange for $60,000 in kickbacks.

Before he was charged in the scheme, McCabe was detained in South Sudan on charges he kidnapped an Indian businessman.

Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter campaigned for his release, threatening foreign aid to the country.

McCabe apologized in court, saying he made a mistake.