A former marketing executive at Dunkin’ Brands Inc. has pleaded guilty to charges that she steered hundreds of thousands of work to an outside contractor in return for a 50 percent kickback.

A former director of external communications at Dunkin’ Brands Inc. has pleaded guilty to charges that she steered hundreds of thousands of dollars of work to an outside contractor in return for a 50 percent kickback.


Carolyn Kravetz, 43, has entered a guilty plea in Boston federal court to an eight-count indictment charging her with mail fraud and filing false tax returns. She faces a potential prison sentence at the time she is scheduled to be sentenced on June 2.


Prosecutors said Kravetz agreed to steer Dunkin’ Brands contract work to a graphic design and publishing firm in Boston, Luminophore Inc., owned by Boris Levitin. Kravetz and Levitin were close friends and attended Boston University in the 1980s.


In return for landing nearly $400,000 in contracts from Dunkin’ Brands in 2004 and 2005, Levitin agreed to return half of the money directly to Kravetz’s personal account, prosecutors said.


In many cases, prosecutors said Levitin was paid by Dunkin’ for work he hadn’t completed.


When federal prosecutors filed the original indictment for the case in 2008, a lawyer for Levitin said his client paid Dunkin’ Brands back for all the money Kravetz accepted personally – as well as money that was paid for work that he hadn’t completed. Levitin was also indicted at the time in connection with the alleged kickback scheme.


However, it doesn’t appear that Levitin plans to continue to fight the charges. A spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Boston said Levitin is scheduled to enter a guilty plea on Feb. 24 in Boston federal court.


Kravetz lived in Brookline at the time she worked for Dunkin’ Brands, the parent company of the Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins chains. She had moved to California by the time of the 2008 indictment.


Andrew Mastrangelo, a spokesman for Dunkin’ Brands, said company officials are glad that the case has reached an appropriate conclusion and appreciate the hard work of everyone involved in prosecuting the case. Because Kravetz no longer works at Dunkin’ Brands, Mastrangelo said the company wouldn’t comment further about the case.


Jon Chesto may be reached at jchesto@ledger.com.