A former acting Inspector General at the Department of Homeland Security has been indicted in a scheme for the alleged theft of government proprietary software and confidential databases.
Charles K. Edwards of Sandy Spring, Maryland was charged in the indictment announced by the Justice Department.
He and a former subordinate, Murali Yamazula Venkata of Aldie, Virginia, are alleged to have executed a scheme to defraud the U.S. government by stealing confidential and proprietary software from DHS Office of Inspector General (OIG), along with sensitive government databases containing personal identifying information of DHS and USPS employees, so that Edwards’ company, Delta Business Solutions, could later sell an enhanced version of the government software to the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Agriculture at a profit.
Edwards left his position at DHS in 2013, but the indictment alleges that he continued to leverage his relationship with Venkata and other DHS-OIG employees to steal the software and the sensitive government databases.
The indictment further alleges that Venkata and others also assisted Edwards by reconfiguring his laptop so that he could properly upload the stolen software and databases, provided troubleshooting support whenever Edwards required it, and helped him build a testing server at his residence with the stolen software and databases, which contained the personal information of the federal employees.
As further part of the alleged scheme, Edwards retained software developers in India for the purpose of developing his commercial alternative of DHS-OIG’s software.