A senior civilian scientist working for the Air Force convinced a colleague to hire a sex worker as an administrative technician involved in military propulsion research, according to a warrant unsealed Monday by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. The scientist is also said to have threatened to kill his colleague and himself; splitting up a government contract to pay the sex worker’s salary; and possibly recruited 27 female escorts in various U.S. cities, many of whom “were foreign nationals from countries identified as U.S. national security concerns,” the warrant said.
The story, first reported by The Daily Beast, is the latest sex-related controversy to develop at the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio. In April, former lab chief Maj. Gen. William Cooley became the first Air Force general to be court-martialed after being charged with three counts of sexually assaulting his sister-in-law. Cooley was found guilty of specifying the charges and was sentenced to a reprimand and forfeiture of $10,910 a month for five months.
Like Cooley, Gord played an important role in the Air Force Research Laboratory. Gord’s research “has spawned a myriad of fundamental technological breakthroughs in burst-mode laser measurement systems that are enabling scientists and engineers to better understand real-world performance of airbreathing and rocket engines,” according to an Air Force press release from the year 2016. He also played a key role in overseeing government contracts to Spectral Energies, which provided “unclassified laser imaging.” [sic] of turbine engines” for the laboratory according to the search warrant. According to an obituary linked by The Daily Beast, Gord died last September. The obituary gave no cause of death.
Trouble for Gord appeared to start in 2017, when the scientist lost his father to suicide and he “suffered from severe depression,” according to the search warrant, first filed in December 2019. A short time later the owner of Spectral Energies, Dr. Sukesh Roy, Gord said he is looking for an administrative technician. Roy and Gord went way back – the company had had contracts with the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Air Force for some 17 years, and although Gord was officially the lead research scientist for Spectral-backed technology and was responsible for contract funding for Roy’s research , The two men were also friends. Gord told Roy he met “a young pro” on his flight to Washington DC who he thought would be a good fit with Spectral, had technical expertise and was “really hot too,” he said, according to the search warrant .
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Convinced, Roy hired the woman in the position in November 2017, but soon grew frustrated with the woman’s “lack of skills in the position,” according to the search warrant. For example, the new employee “did not fully understand how to use basic word processing and document creation software and struggled to formulate coherent emails between offices,” the search warrant said. She “didn’t provide her college credentials as requested,” and Roy learned her resume was also filled with false degrees and qualifications. Roy confronted Gord, who allegedly confessed that the woman was a prostitute he had met in Cincinnati, one of 27 sex workers in cities across the country whom he reportedly recruited during an official U.S. government trip and whose name he gave listed in a government spreadsheet – Laptop on display for personal reasons.
“Gord told Roy he would take cash advances against his government ticket to pay for these women so that family finances would not be visibly affected,” the warrant explained, adding that Gord did not want his wife or children to know about his relationships the women.
The government had quite a bill to pay. According to the warrant, Gord allegedly paid the Cincinnati woman “$400 an hour for various sexual acts” and had fallen in love with her, a feeling he described as mutual. The warrant said the two had sexed on Gord’s government-issued iPhone. The investigation found that the woman was also “involved in prostitution activities” near Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, including with other civilian employees such as “Dr. I.K,” a ballistic missile systems scientist who Gord said paid the woman “about $20,000 a year to clean his apartment naked and then perform oral sex on him,” according to the warrant.
Despite the woman’s lack of scientific background, Gord reportedly urged Roy to involve her more in the technical research Gord oversaw in Spectral’s contracts, even requesting that her name be included in future white paper releases, asking Roy to do the Woman to make company representative on temporary duties of an Air Force Research Laboratory. Roy denied both requests and expressed “his ethical concerns” about Gord’s relationship with the woman and urged him to “cease all contact with her,” according to the warrant. This allegedly angered Gord and ended the discussion. Roy met with a lawyer to try to get the woman released, but the lawyer advised him to wait until the one-year review deadline in November 2018 to avoid possible liability.
When Gord found out that Roy was planning to fire the woman, whose name was not revealed in The Daily Beast’s redacted warrant, he freaked out, allegedly saying that if Roy “leaked” knowledge of Gord’s relationship with her, he would he “came to Building 5 with one of his many weapons to “stop it all,” which Roy took to mean Gord would kill Roy and then himself, the warrant said.
“Gord also reminded Roy of the ethnicity of Bangladesh…that the ‘old boys’ club’ at AFRL would never believe Roy if they revealed the information about a scientist as respected as Gord since Roy was an immigrant,” reads in the arrest warrant.
In October 2018, about two weeks before her year-long review, the woman allegedly told Roy that she was leaving Spectral Energies to work for its competitor Innovative Scientific Solutions Incorporated, that she was being cited as a technical research assistant for a pending ISSI publication, and The search warrant stated that she was traveling with Gord to scientific conferences on behalf of ISSI. Around the same time, Spectral from the Air Force Research Laboratory was scheduled to extend its regular $250,000 research grant, only for Roy to find out that Spectral would only receive $150,000, with the rest going to ISSI. Gord was responsible for the decision, and it was the first time in years that he did not allocate the entire research budget to Spectral, the warrant said.
Investigators also said they found an audio recording Gord made with his government-issued iPhone, in which the scientist allegedly said he would transfer funds from Roy’s contract to ISSI to pay the woman’s salary “if.” when it comes to the crunch,” according to the arrest warrant. Over the next few months, colleagues informed Roy that Gord was introducing the woman to professional circles as a research assistant, and that Gord had allegedly arranged for her to chair a scientific panel as a technical expert at an upcoming conference on research and applications of photonics in defense.
Roy first told Air Force investigators about the situation in March 2019, when he expressed concern that Gord “engaged in unethical contract negotiations, threatened violence and regularly called for prostitution” while on base and while traveling in official Air Force stores was . In April, investigators searched Gord’s office and found a desk drawer containing a box of Trojan condoms, a pair of women’s underwear and empty bottles of erectile dysfunction treatment pills with Gord’s name on the prescription.
Emails between Gord and the woman revealed that Gord was teaching her “how to interact with scientists” and encouraging her to develop a strong “backstory,” including degrees in biochemistry and art history from various universities. In August, investigators also found an Excel document on Gord’s government laptop titled “Burner Log” containing text message content between Gord and 27 different female escorts across the country from June 2015 to November 2018. The women were foreign nationals from countries considered US national security concerns. Investigators also found screenshots of several women’s profiles, including nude and lingerie photos, and their hourly rates.
Investigators filed the warrant to request a search of Gord and the woman’s Google and Yahoo! websites. Email accounts for more information. Investigators said the following federal offenses may have been committed: prostitution near military and naval installations; false, fictitious or fraudulent claims; embezzlement/abuse of government property; false statements; extortion by United States officials or employees; ethnic intimidation; and increasingly menacing.
According to court records, the search warrant against Gord and the woman appears to have ended in October 2020 and there were no related cases on file.
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