Former Camden Town Manager James O. Plumley III has been sentenced to 24 months in prison.

Former Camden Town Manager James O. Plumley III has been sentenced to 24 months in prison for his role in a scheme to defraud the state of Delaware out of more than $200,000.

Plumley learned of his fate during a Feb. 4 appearance before Delaware District United States District Court Judge Richard G. Andrews, in Wilmington. In addition to the prison time, Andrews ordered Plumley to repay more than $204,000 to the state, said court spokeswoman Kimberlynn Reeves.

Prior to his being hired as Camden’s town manager, Plumley worked at Roofing Resources Inc., of Chadd’s Ford, Pa., and was responsible for assisting the state of Delaware’s Division of Facilities Management select qualified contractors to repair and maintain roofs at state-owned facilities. 

Plumley used this position to steer roofing contracts to his co-defendant, contractor William P. Mahon, Reeves said.

In return, Mahon inflated project bids by a specified amount, which he later deposited into Plumley’s checking account as a kickback. Over the course of the scheme, the FBI was able to identify $204,000 in kickbacks to Plumley between 2004 and 2008.

The former town manager was to be sentenced Dec. 19, the same day as Mahon, but Andrews allowed a delay due for medical reasons; Plumley has been battling throat cancer over the past year, according to documents filed by his defense attorney, Eleni Kousoulis.

Although he faced several federal criminal charges, Plumley agreed to plead guilty to mail fraud; he could have received up to 20 years in a federal prison.

Mahon was spared prison time at his December sentencing, being ordered to undergo two years of probation and to pay restitution.

The case was based on investigative work by Camden Chief of Police William Bryson and former Camden Police Capt. Gary Melvin, who provided the Federal Bureau of Investigation with a strong foundation for federal prosecutors, Reeves said.