Imprisoned founder of body armor company dies at 61
David H. Brooks, the founder of America’s leading supplier of body armor to the U.S. military, died in prison while serving a 17-year sentence for running a massive stock fraud scheme. He was 61. The U.S. Bureau of Prisons confirmed Brooks died Thursday at the Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, Connecticut. On Saturday, BOP spokesman Justin Long said, for privacy reasons, prison officials cannot release additional details.
Brooks’ lawyer told Newsday that his client became ill Thursday and was taken to a hospital. He said it was unclear what led to his death. “It was sudden and unexpected,” said Richard Klugh, Brooks’ federal appeals attorney in Miami. Brooks, the founder and former chief executive of DHB Industries, was convicted in 2010 of securities fraud, conspiracy and other charges for masterminding a $185 million stock swindle and using the proceeds to pay for personal luxuries. Prosecutors said he threw extravagant bar and bat mitzvahs for his children in which entertainers such as Tom Petty, Aerosmith and the Eagles performed. They said he also bought a diamond-encrusted belt buckle in the shape of an American flag for more than $100,000.
During his trial in federal court in New York, prosecutors said Brooks used the company treasury for his own extravagances, with more than $6 million in unauthorized expenditures. Brooks and a co-defendant were accused of falsely inflating the value of the inventory of the company’s top product — the Interceptor vest — to help meet profit margin projections.