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U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Archive

Severe soil settling has caused this guardhouse to lean and its surrounding walls to crack. SIGAR has recently identified significant soil stability issues at the construction site of the Kunduz ANA garrison. (SIGAR photo)

Tony Capaccio – (Bloomberg) – October 25, 2012 – The Army Corps of Engineers freed DynCorp International Inc., one of the largest U.S. contractors in Afghanistan, of responsibility for construction at an Afghan Army garrison even though long-standing deficiencies remain, according to an inspector general’s report.

In a 2010 audit, Pentagon inspectors identified failings at the camp in northern Afghanistan that included “poor site grading” and “serious soil stability issues.” Inspectors returned in March of this year to find “additional structural failures, improper grading and new sinkholes,” the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction said in an audit issued today.

DynCorp, a unit of New York-based Cerberus Capital Management LP, oversaw the construction at Camp Pamir in Afghanistan’s Kunduz province. The DynCorp project was part of a U.S. effort to train and house the Afghan Army, which is growing this year to 195,000 personnel.

“Despite the unsatisfactory performance of the contractor, DynCorp,” officials from the Army Corps’s District North region in Afghanistan “released DynCorp from further contractual liability,” John Sopko, the inspector general, wrote in today’s report. The company was paid $70.8 million on the contracts, “releasing it from any further liabilities and warranty obligations.”

DynCorp’s Comment

“We absolutely disagree with several of the report’s conclusions concerning the causes for the issues experienced at this site,” Ashley Burke, a DynCorp spokeswoman, said today in an e-mail. “Further, work was completed and this contract was closed out last year so we are unable to comment on 2012 site conditions that may or may not exist today.”

DynCorp turned over responsibility for the site in 2011, and the current occupants have been accountable for maintenance and care of the facilities since then, Burke said.

Other contractors were doing additional construction and grading work by the time inspectors returned, she said. The company was still reviewing the report, which it didn’t see in advance of its release, Burke said.

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Former U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers Employee Pleads Guilty To Multimillion-Dollar Bribery, Kickback Scheme

(DoJ) – NEWARK, N.J. – September 7, 2012 – A former U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) employee deployed to Tikrit, Iraq, during Operation Iraqi Freedom today admitted taking at least $3.7 million in bribes and kickbacks in connection with more than $50 million in USACE contracts awarded to foreign companies in Gulf Region North, Iraq, New Jersey U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Egyptian-born U.S. citizen John Alfy Salama Markus, 40, of Nazareth, Pa., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Jose L. Linares in Newark federal court to three counts of a 54-count Indictment returned in July 2011 charging him with wire fraud, conspiracy to commit bribery and to defraud the U.S. government, money laundering, and tax offenses. Two other USACE employees and two foreign contractors also were charged in the July 2011 Indictment.

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“Today the ringleader of the largest bribery and bid-steering scheme in the history of federal contracting accepted responsibility for his crimes,” said U.S. Attorney Machen. “For his shocking abuse of his position of power, Kerry Khan faces more than two decades in prison. The homes, cars, and jewelry he financed with bribes and kickbacks have now been returned to their rightful owner – the American taxpayer.
U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen

Second Former U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Manager Pleads Guilty in Alleged $30 Million Bribery and Kickback Scheme

Scam Involved Steering of Government Contracts; Official’s Son Also Pleads Guilty to Charges Today
(DoJ) - WASHINGTON – Kerry F. Khan, 54, a former program manager for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, pled guilty today to federal charges of bribery and conspiracy to commit money laundering in a scheme that allegedly involved more than $30 million in bribes and kickback payments and the planned steering of a government contract potentially worth $1 billion.

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Former U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Manager Pleads Guilty in Alleged $20 Million Bribery and Kickback Scheme Scam Involved Steering of Government Contracts; Contractor Also Pleads Guilty to Charges Today

(DoJ) – WASHINGTON – February 13, 2012 – Michael A. Alexander, 55, a former program manager for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, pled guilty today to federal charges of bribery and conspiracy to commit money laundering in a scheme that allegedly involved more than $20 million in bribes and kickback payments and the planned steering of a $780 million government contract.

The plea was announced by U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr.; James W. McJunkin, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office; Peggy E. Gustafson, Inspector General for the Small Business Administration (SBA); Robert E. Craig, Special Agent in Charge of the Mid-Atlantic Field Office of the Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS); Eric Hylton, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Washington Field Office of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI), and James K. Podolak, Director of the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command’s (CID) Major Procurement Fraud Unit (MPFU).

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That bird won’t fly and other news

Posted January 30, 2012 By Forseti

Hold that Revolving Door! Four-Star General Coming Through
Dana Liebelson – (POGO) – January 28, 2012 – The revolving door that carried former Department of Defense honcho William Lynn III to a well-paying job with an Italian defense contractor keeps on spinning – now Gen. James Cartwright, who retired as the nation’s second-highest ranking military officer in August, is following Lynn into the private sector.

Cartwright is joining the Board of Directors at Raytheon, a major U.S. defense contractor. Earlier in the week, DRS Technologies named Lynn as its chief executive officer. (Coincidently, before Lynn was tapped as deputy defense secretary, he was a top lobbyist for Raytheon.)

“General Cartwright’s deep understanding of defense and broad experience in military operations and matters of national security will be of great value to our Board,” Raytheon Chairman and CEO William H. Swanson said in a press release.

Well, Cartwright certainly has a deep understanding of defense: He’s a four-star general with 40 years of service in the Marine Corps, including four years as the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. But then there’s that sticky “great value to the Board” comment. And that’s where the problem with the well-oiled revolving door that leads from the Pentagon to the defense industry rears its ugly head. (Click HERE for article)

Former United Nations Employee Sentenced to 18 Months in Prison
(DoJ) – WASHINGTON - January 27, 2012 – Jeffery K. Armstrong, 52, of South Riding, Va., was sentenced today to 18 months in prison for obtaining more than $100,000 in salary payments by fraudulently holding concurrent jobs at the United Nations (U.N.) and the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). He was ordered to serve a three-year term of supervised release following his sentence and to pay $128,153 in restitution.

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