Rockville woman pleads guilty to perjury and accepting bribes -- Gazette.Net


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A Rockville woman will serve up to five years in prison after pleading guilty in federal court to perjury and accepting bribes.

Lauren Jeannette Diggs, 50, of Rockville, took bribes to falsify drug tests of federal criminal defendants, then committed perjury before the grand jury investigating the allegations, according to U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein, in a release announcing the plea.

Chief U.S. District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow is scheduled to sentence Diggs on April 22.

In 2009 and 2010, Diggs worked as the primary alcohol and substance abuse counselor for Alcohol and Drug Recovery, which provides alcohol and drug treatment services, according to her plea agreement.

The agreement said Diggs supervised tests contracted by the U.S. Probation and Pretrial Services in Maryland to check if women on pretrial release, supervised release, parole or probation had used controlled substances.

According to her plea agreement, starting in January 2010, Diggs asked Christopher Womack, a urine technician working at ADR, to help deceive U.S. Probation in exchange for money from ADR clients. Diggs introduced Womack to her bribe-paying clients and explained her bribe fee schedule, the agreement said.

Even after she was fired from ADR in 2010, Diggs continued helping Womack create fictitious certificates for ADR clients and received payments for her part in the scheme, the plea agreement said.

Many of her clients had “significant criminal histories,” according to her plea agreement, and had been using controlled substances while on supervised release.

Womack, 43, of Forestville, Md., worked with Diggs and took bribes to falsify tests and provide fake discharge certificates, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Womack pleaded guilty to bribery on July 26, 2012, and is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 4.

Diggs and Womack received more than 100 individual bribe payments, charging hundreds of dollars for their services, according to the plea agreement.

In 2012, a grand jury began investigating Diggs’ bribery scheme.

During that time, Diggs tried to subvert the investigation by lying under oath and attempting to get Womack to also lie, her plea agreement said.

Although she denied speaking with Womack, she called him and urged him to deceive the grand jury.

“Deny anything,” she told him, according to the agreement. “Anything that’s asked, deny. No. No. No. No.”

sjbsmith@gazette.net