A former spokesman Drug Enforcement Administration received a seven-year prison sentence on Wednesday for a $4.4 million fraud scheme, according to the Washington Examiner.

Garrison Courtney, 44, was convicted after he “falsely claimed to be a covert officer of the CIA involved in a highly classified program or ‘task force’ involving various components of the United States Intelligence Community and the Department of Defense,” according to the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia.

From 2005 to 2009, Courtney worked as a DEA spokesperson. In June, he pleaded guilty to committing wire fraud.

Courtney lied to companies by telling them he worked with a top-secret program that looked to enhance the intelligence-gathering capabilities of the United States government, the Justice Department said.

He told companies to hire and pay him a salary to be able to work under “commercial cover,” so he could conceal his connection to the CIA.

“Courtney, along with his five aliases, will now spend the next seven years in federal prison for his deceitful and felonious criminal conduct,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

Courtney falsely claimed to be a Gulf War veteran with hundreds of kills in combat. He also said he was the target of an assassination attempt with ricin, the Department of Justice said. Then he lied about injuring his lungs with smoke after lighting Iraqi oil fields ablaze.

None of these claims were true.

”Courtney wove an expansive web of lies by posing as a covert CIA officer working on a classified program. Courtney’s brazen scheme and manipulation was fueled by his own greed, all while invoking the secrecy of ‘national security’ to hide his lies,” said Steven M. D’Antuono, assistant director in charge of the FBI Washington Field Office.


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