updated 11/18/2010 7:11:13 PM ET 2010-11-19T00:11:13

A former NASA chief of staff was sentenced to more than three years in prison on a conspiracy charge stemming from a $600,000 contract awarded by the space agency to a client of his consulting firm.

Courtney Stadd, NASA's chief of staff and White House liaison from 2001 to 2003, pleaded guilty in August to one conspiracy charge in a nine-count indictment.

He was sentenced Thursday to serve 41 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release.

U.S. Attorney Don Burkhalter and NASA Inspector General Paul K. Martin announced the sentence in a news release. Stadd also was ordered to pay a $7,500 fine and $287,000 in restitution to NASA.

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