Former FBI Official Sentenced to Over Two Years for Concealing Payment from Albanian Businessman

Credits: VOA News

A former top FBI counterintelligence official, Charles McGonigal, was sentenced to 28 months in prison for concealing at least $225,000 he received from an Albanian businessperson with ties to the Albanian government.

McGonigal, who oversaw counterintelligence and national security operations, hid his relationship with the businessperson from the FBI while traveling with them and meeting Albanian officials for their business interests.

Addressing U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly before sentencing, McGonigal expressed remorse, acknowledging that he would spend the rest of his life trying to regain trust and become a better person.

Ex-FBI Official (Credits: Fox News)

However, Kollar-Kotelly remarked that while his remorse seemed genuine, it did not repair the damage, suggesting that McGonigal had “lost his moral compass” towards the end of his career.

McGonigal claimed the $225,000 was a loan to start a security consulting business after retirement, but he never repaid it. He pleaded guilty last year, admitting to failing to disclose the loan, his travel abroad, or his contact with other Albanian officials.

Prosecutors sought a 30-month prison sentence, highlighting that McGonigal abused public trust for personal gain, particularly egregious as he was a law enforcement officer charged with enforcing the very laws he violated out of greed.

In a separate case in New York last December, McGonigal was sentenced to 50 months in prison for conspiring to violate sanctions on Russia and launder money to Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska, whom he had previously investigated. Deripaska had ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin and was under sanction for Russia’s actions in Crimea.