Ex Netflix IT Opps. Boss Pocketed $500k+ in Bribes Before Awarding Millions in Tech Contracts
Michael Kail, former VP of IT Operations at Netflix, was convicted on Friday on 28 counts of wire fraud, mail fraud, and money laundering after a federal jury found that he took advantage of his position to demand bribes from vendors.
Kail, 49, a resident of Los Gatos, California, is said to have pocketed more than $500,000 and stock options in exchange for approving millions of dollars worth of contracts with Netflix. He oversaw IT contracts and purchases for Netflix from November 2011 through August 2014.
The indictment against Kail describes how he created his own limited liability firm, Unix Mercenary, LLC, to collect kickback payments. Between February 2012 and July 2014, Kail is said to have obtained payments through Unix Mercenary from Netenrich, Inc. and its VistaraIT, LLC subsidiary.
The payments amounted to 12%, and later 15%, of the firms’ billings to Netflix for providing staffing and IT services. Kail is said to have collected $269,986 and $177,863 from the firms, respectively.