Two former executives of McGregor & Werner Inc., a Washington printing firm, have pleaded guilty in federal court to reduced charges of violating the federal Travel Act. Federal officials dropped 17 counts of bribing a public official in exchange for the plea.
Richard K. Clark, 67, of 5000 Overlook Road, Washington,and Ricardo D. Zappone, 53, of 5 Schindler Court, Silver Spring, had been charged with bribing two printing office supervisors at two Ohio military installations.
They each pleaded guilty last month before U.S. District Court Judge Carl B. Rubin to one count of violating the Travel Act. The act prohibits traveling across state lines to commit a crime. It carries a maximum five-year prison sentence and $10,000 fine.
Clark and Zappone were indicted in May by a federal grand jury in Dayton on charges of conspiracy and racketeering, and on 17 counts of bribing a public official. Clark also had been indicted on two counts of violating the Travel Act, while Zappone was indicted on one Travel Act violation.
As part of the plea bargain, both men agreed to cooperate with any further federal investigations which would include testifying before grant juries or trial juries.
U.S. Attorney James C. Cissell of Cincinnati said the agreement was made because "there are a few other matters we wanted to look into."
Cissell would not disclose how much money was involved in either the alleged bribes or the printing contracts.
Both men resigned June 12 from positions with McGregor and Werner, which is located at 6411 Chillum Place NW, and which operates a printing plant in New Carlisle, near Dayton. Clark was president of the company; Zappone was vice president for governmental sales.
With the guilty plea, Rubin disolved an order prohibiting the two men from selling or disposing any of their stock in the company. Clark reportedly owns 69 percent of the firm; Zappone, 8 percent.
Clark pleaded guilty to a charge that he traveled from Washington to Ohio on June 21, 1977, to pay a bribe to Jose Garcia, former supervisor of printing and reproduction at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton. Zappone pleaded guilty to a charge that he traveled from Washington to Ohio on Nov. 1, 1977, to pay a bribe to Garcia.
Garcia pleaded guilty in 1978 and recently was released after a year in federal prison for soliciting a bribe.
Robert Kaiser Jr., a former vice president of McGregor and Werner, was convicted last year for bribing Garcia.
According to a spokesman for the compnay, the charges against the two former officers haven't affected its government contracts because the action was against Clark and Zappone, not the firm.
No date has been set for sentencing the two men.