Former US Ambassador to Pakistan Richard Olson was on Friday sentenced to three years of probation for violating US Federal Ethics Laws for American diplomats.
Among other charges, Olson was accused of receiving favours from a Pakistani-American businessman that benefited his then-girlfriend and current wife, a Pakistan-origin Briton.
Olson came under a probe by US authorities for helping the Qatari government influence US policymakers shortly after retiring from the US State Department as a diplomat in 2016.
During the investigation, he pleaded guilty to making false statements and violating US laws on lobbying for foreign governments.
"US law prohibits senior officials -- like the defendant -- from representing a foreign government before any federal agency or from aiding or advising a foreign entity with the intent to influence the US government for one year after leaving their positions," read a statement issued by the US Attorney's Office in Washington over Olson's sentencing.
The former diplomat was also accused of actively attempting to conceal his illegal activities, including deleting incriminating emails and misleading federal investigators.
His list of favours from a Pakistani-American businessman included a payment of $25,000 for his girlfriend to attend college at the prestigious Columbia University and a first-class ticket to London worth $18,000.
In exchange, Olson agreed to lobby members of Congress on behalf of the businessman.
"One major favour was that the defendant agreed to lobby members of Congress on Person 1's behalf with respect to weapon sales to Pakistan and Middle Eastern countries that Person 1 was trying to broker," the US Attorney's office said.
Olson was also slapped with a fine worth $93,400 after he pleaded guilty to misusing his official position for personal gain.
An earlier report in The Washington Post claimed that the businessman was Imaad Zuberi, who has already been sentenced to 12 years in prison for illegal campaign contributions and other offences.
In Pakistan, the news had created a storm surrounding Olson and his romantic life, given that he struck up a relationship with his current wife while she was reporting the news in Pakistan and Olson still diplomatically represented the US.