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Neil Gordon (POGO): ‘Stoner Arms Dealer’ Gets 14-Year Ban from Federal Contracting

Efraim is in your extended network By NEIL GORDON

June 2, 2011 – (POGO) – The story of Efraim Diveroli took a new turn in March when the U.S. Army debarred Diveroli and his company, AEY Inc., from federal contracting for 14 years. POGO first blogged about the 22-year-old arms dealer from Miami Beach three years ago when his incredible story first made the news (here’s his MySpace profile from March 2008).

At that time, the Army had suspended Diveroli amid allegations that he supplied defective gun cartridges, some of which had been illegally exported from China, under a $300 million Army contract. Diveroli and several of his business partners eventually pleaded guilty. In January of this year, Diveroli was sentenced to four years in prison.

The Army finally lowered the boom on Diveroli with a 14-year ban on doing business with the federal government. The Army also imposed a ten-year debarment on several of Diveroli’s associates and the web of companies they set up to reap the fortunes of the international arms trade. Read the remainder of this entry »

Secret squirrels squandering tax dollars & other news

One project that attracted high-level scrutiny last year: a program started by DoD senior civilian strategist Michael Furlong that hired professional contractors to scoop up information in Afghanistan. Furlong, an ex-Army officer, said through his attorney Nancy Luque that the project was approved by Army Gen. David McKiernan, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, and by the newly nominated Central Command chief Gen. David Petraeus. – JIEDDO: The Manhattan Project that bombed

In effort to stop roadside bombs, Pentagon hires 1,666 contractors
Peter Cary & Nancy A. Youssef – (Center for Public Integrity & McClatchy Newspapers) – WASHINGTON – March 27, 2011 – Launched in February 2006 with an urgent goal — to save U.S. soldiers from being killed by roadside bombs in Iraq — a small Pentagon agency ballooned into a bureaucratic giant fueled by that flourishing arm of the defense establishment: private contractors.

An examination by the Center for Public Integrity and McClatchy of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization revealed an agency so dominated by contractors that the ratio of contractors to government employees has reached six to one.

A JIEDDO former director, Lt. Gen. Michael Oates, acknowledged that such an imbalance raised the possibility that contractors in management positions could approve proposals or payments for other contractors. Oates said the ratio needed to be reduced.

The 1,900-person agency has spent nearly $17 billion on hundreds of high-tech and low-tech initiatives and had some successes, but it’s failed to significantly improve soldiers’ ability to detect roadside bombs, which have become the No. 1 killer of U.S. forces in Afghanistan. (Click HERE for article)

In the line of duty
Former cop Mark Mitchell’s exploits in the Middle East sound like the plot of a Hollywood blockbuster – but has he got what it takes to make it as a politician?

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Selectively Enforcing MEJA and other news

SA man embroiled in bizarre US court case
Andrew Trench & Julian Rademeyer – Johannesburg – December 26, 2010 – A South African contractor working in Afghanistan has been arrested and spirited away across the world under a controversial United States law.

Sean Brehm, 44, arrived in the US on Tuesday and is being held near ­Washington.

Brehm, who ran a VIP ­protection company in Cape Town and who had been working in Afghanistan since October last year, was arrested at the ­Kandahar Air Force Base last month after allegedly stabbing and severely wounding a British contractor in a dispute.

At the time, Brehm was ­employed as a travel consultant for US department of defence contractor DynCorp. (Click HERE for article)

From the Pentagon to the private sector
In large numbers, and with few rules, retiring generals are taking lucrative defense-firm jobs
Mike Shedlock – WASHINGTON – December 26, 2010 – An hour after the official ceremony marking the end of his 35-year career in the Air Force, General Gregory “Speedy’’ Martin returned to his quarters to swap his dress uniform for golf attire. He was ready for his first tee time as a retired four-star general.

But almost as soon as he closed the door that day in 2005 his phone rang. It was an executive at Northrop Grumman, asking if he was interested in working for the manufacturer of the B-2 stealth bomber as a paid consultant. A few weeks later, Martin received another call. This time it was the Pentagon, asking him to join a top-secret Air Force panel studying the future of stealth aircraft technology.

Martin was understandably in demand, having been the general in charge of all Air Force weapons programs, including the B-2, for the previous four years.

He said yes to both offers.

In almost any other realm it would seem a clear conflict of interest — pitting his duty to the US military against the interests of his employer — not to mention a revolving-door sprint from uniformed responsibilities to private paid advocacy.

But this is the Pentagon where, a Globe review has found, such apparent conflicts are a routine fact of life at the lucrative nexus between the defense procurement system, which spends hundreds of billions of dollars a year, and the industry that feasts on those riches. And almost nothing is ever done about it. (Click HERE for article)

ON WATCH: Soft on Corruption
Stephen Davis – December 26, 2010 – Three weeks ago in this column I wrote about the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) raid on the offices of Halliburton in Lagos and the arrest of company officials. The arrests were made in relation to the alleged payment by Kellogg Brown & Root Inc., (KBR), a Halliburton subsidiary until 2007, of $180 million in bribes to senior Nigerian government officials between 1994 and 2004 in an effort to secure $6 billion in contracts for the Bonny Island liquefied natural gas (LNG) project.

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Rogue jurors, indictments, plea deals etc.. – the news

Employee of Federal Contractor Charged with Disclosing National Defense Information to National News Reporter
August 27, 2010 – WASHINGTON – A federal grand jury in the District of Columbia has returned an indictment charging Stephen Jin-Woo Kim with unlawfully disclosing national defense information to a reporter for a national news organization and making false statements to the FBI.

The indictment, which was unsealed today, was announced by David S. Kris, Assistant Attorney General for the National Security Division; Ronald C. Machen Jr., U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia; and Shawn Henry, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI Washington Field Office.

Kim, age 43, was an employee of a federal contractor who was on detail to the State Department at the time of the alleged disclosure. Kim made his initial appearance today in court in the District of Columbia. If convicted, he faces up to 10 years in prison for the unlawful disclosure of national defense information and up to five years in prison for the making of false statements.

According to the indictment, in June 2009, Kim knowingly and willfully disclosed information contained in an intelligence report classified Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information (TS/SCI) to a reporter for a national news organization who was not entitled to receive it. The classified information related to the national defense, specifically, intelligence sources and methods and intelligence concerning the military capabilities and preparedness of a particular foreign nation. (Click HERE for article)

The Brooks trial: When jurors go rogue
Harnesslink -26-Aug-2010 – Andrew Cohen – It is by far the least surprising legal development of the year that there would be trouble inside the jury room in the corporate fraud trial of David H. Brooks, the titular head of the Perfect World Enterprises and Bulletproof Enterprises harness racing empire.

The white-collar case with the red-light tinge has been a circus, a freak show, and a mess since its inception. And I’m quite sure I’m not the only one who sees grand irony in the fact that Brooks’ jury might get hung up because one or more of its members may be cheating on the oath of service.

Brooks’ zany trial (involving two defendants, actually, allegations of hundreds of millions of dollars of fraud, and decades in prison as a potential sentence) was far too long. And long trials typically beget long deliberations. But it’s been three weeks or so and jurors should have been back with a verdict by now. Last week, the federal judge/zookeeper who presides over U.S. v. Brooks received a note from a juror who wrote that some colleague “sit there and read testimony that doesn’t relate to the charges we are discussing.” U.S. District Judge Joanna Seybert gently reminded the panel that they all needed to stay focused upon deliberations.

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