Cracking Down on Contractors

A criminal indictment and a demand for some refunds

When the Pentagon detected irregularities in its audit of General Electric's contract to replace the warheads on Minuteman missiles, it did not file a civil suit. Instead, in an unusual move, it referred the case to the Justice Department for criminal prosecution. Last week U.S. Attorney Edward Dennis Jr. announced that a federal grand jury in Philadelphia had returned an indictment against G.E. for allegedly defrauding the Air Force of more than $800,000. In a swift and stiff follow-up punch, the Pentagon declared that it was temporarily barring G.E. from any new military contracts. As if that were not enough, the...

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