Share story

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A Northern California computer expert has pleaded guilty to fixing bids for state contracts.

The U.S. Attorney’s office in Sacramento announced Thursday that 48-year-old John Brewer pleaded guilty to one count of bid rigging. He faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine when he is sentenced in April.

U.S. Attorney MacGregor Scott said Brewer conspired with two competitors to submit inflated bids to ensure Brewer’s computer security company won the contracts with the lowest bids. Scott said Brewer’s company won 40 state contracts in this fashion. The contracts from the Department of Motor Vehicles, Department of Insurance and Employment Development Department were worth more than $3 million.

Brewer’s attorney, Michael Scarborough, did not immediately return a telephone message left Thursday.