Former Contract Worker Pleads Guilty to Stealing Government Property

By Del Quentin Wilber
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 3, 2008; 3:03 PM

A former contract worker admitted in federal court today that he stole at least 89 laptop computers and other equipment worth about $175,000 from the Government Accountability Office and tried to sell them over the Internet.

Darryl R. Lyles, 37, of Capitol Heights pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to theft of government property. Prosecutors said he stole the laptops and one projector from GAO from June 2006 through December of last year.

Lyles, who was working as an information technology analyst, attempted to sell the items on Craigslist -- even posting some of the ads from a computer at the GAO office in the District, prosecutors have said. An unidentified man purchased a laptop from Lyles for several hundred dollars in September 2006 after seeing it for sale on Craigslist, prosecutors said. That man, who lives Springfield and has not been charged, bought at least 83 computers, a projector and other computer parts from Lyles and resold them on eBay, prosecutors wrote.

Lyles faces a maximum of 10 years in prison at his sentencing Feb. 24. But under advisory sentencing guidelines, he is likely to be sentenced to 18 to 24 months of imprisonment, prosecutors said.

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