Oklahoma oil man Robert B. Sutton was sentenced in federal court here yesterday to four years in prison and a $105,000 fine for bribing two Energy Department officials in 1980 and 1981.
Sutton, 51, was convicted of using the bribe scheme to obtain inside information about a federal investigation of his oil-pricing activities.
He is serving a three-year sentence on a separate obstruction-of-justice conviction in Tulsa in 1982.
Sutton, reputedly once one of the richest men in America, wept yesterday as he asked District Court Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson to show leniency.
Sutton said his oil company, founded in 1974, "grew beyond my wildest dreams" and he blamed any improprieties on his employes -- "people who stole from me, stole everything they could get their hands on," he said in an emotional speech to the court. "My wife and I are both devoted Christians. We trust the Lord and pray to him every day to hold us together."
Jackson rejected Sutton's plea for a suspended sentence, calling his bribery conviction here 10 days ago "considerably more serious than the Oklahoma case, although undoubtedly part of the same scheme."
Sutton faced a penalty of up to 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine. Jackson ordered that Sutton serve the latest sentence after he completes his current prison term.
Prosecutors charged that Sutton reaped millions in profits by reselling crude oil through transactions designed to hide the illegal inflation of federally controlled oil prices.
Prosecutors said Sutton began conspiring in 1980 to buy DOE documents implicating him in the alleged oil price fraud. The information was obtained through bribes to two Energy employes.
One official, Mark Sucher, was convicted of conspiracy and bribery 10 days ago. The second, Shelley R. Kolbert, pleaded guilty last year and drew a one-year prison term.