Despite family’s pleas, Cobb man sentenced for Afghan kickback scheme

A Smyrna man has been sentenced for a kickback scheme involving an Afghan executive.

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A Smyrna man has been sentenced for a kickback scheme involving an Afghan executive.

Nebraska McAlpine will miss his son’s college graduation because he’ll be in prison.

Judge Mark H. Cohen on Tuesday sentenced the Smyrna man to 21 months, according to sentencing documents, for taking $250,000 in kickbacks from the executive of an Afghan company.

The 56-year-old father, who worked as a government contractor in Kabul, faced up to 10 years in prison when he pleaded guilty in July, records show.

A coworker, a brother, two children and his reverend all wrote letters to Cohen attesting to McAlpine’s character.

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His wife signed her three-page letter to the judge as “Mrs. Nebraska McAlpine.”

“Having to live with a felony conviction attached to his name will be a lifetime reminder of one mistake that has wiped out decades of good, consistent work and one that puts a shadow over his integrity,” she wrote.

McAlpine admitted that he convinced his supervisors that the Afghan executive’s company should get subcontracts without going through the open bidding process between 2015 and 2016.

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The business was paid $1.6 million to work on the Afghanistan Ministry of the Interior Ultra-High Frequency radio communication program, according to court records. McAlpine got a cut of about 15 percent.

The name of the business nor the Afghan executive of the government contractor were included in court documents. And there wasn’t a mention of whether the company or executive saw any punishment.

McAlpine spread most of the money around banks in metro Atlanta in increments of less than $10,000, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

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His wife wrote about a man she’s known for 18 years who wears shirts until they’re frayed and believes “every man should own a truck and he prefers American made over foreign.”

“We will lose our home to foreclosure if he is incarcerated,” she wrote to the judge, explaining that she resigned from her job in 2009 to take care of their two children when McAlpine went overseas.

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