Justice Department IG Investigates Benefits Given to Informants

Posted on July28, 2015
The Justice Department Office of Inspector General investigated the controls used when the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) paid informants. Inspector General Michael Horowitz's office reported drug traffickers who cooperated with federal investigators "were under criminal investigation by other authorities." Another problem uncovered was the ability of some of the informants or dependents to receive workers' compensation benefits with only "questionable qualifications." The investigation found that there was no formal review of informants and many continued in criminal activity. "A committee…
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DHHS OIG Investigating Generic Drug Prices

Posted on April17, 2015
Members of Congress have requested the Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services look into increases in generic drug prices on the Medicaid drug rebate program. As the cost of prescription drugs increases, brand-named medicine prices have been debated, but not lawmakers want the OIG to look into generic prices as well. Lawmakers are concerned that generic drug prices are increases faster than the inflation rate. In November 2014, data showed "prices for generics…
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Green Card Program Under Investigation by DHS IG

Posted on February16, 2015
The Department of Homeland Security Inspector General has been investigating a program that allows foreign nationals to receive visas or Green Cards by investing in approved American business ventures. The program is known as EB-5 and was previously run by Alijandro Mayorkas. Critics cite the ability to buy visas and Green Cards as a threat to national security and unfair to those immigrants who can't afford the high price tag of $500,000 to $1,000,000. An ABC news investigation turned up…
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EPA OIG Finds Human Resource Faults Within Own Office

Posted on February11, 2015
The Environmental Protection Agency Office of Inspector General released a report citing cracks in the hiring and payroll practices. The two major problems uncovered were that managers did not "verify the employment history or references of job candidates and hasn't always followed internal overtime policies or guidelines for reporting time and attendance." Unchecked backgrounds could result in the hiring of less than qualified candidates, or candidates with a history of deception. The report recommended that the office "require verification of…
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Florida Whistle-Blower Wins Vindication

Posted on January20, 2015
Candace Carter, a former biological science technician at Canaveral National Seashore, has won a whistle-blower retaliation ruling. Carter first alerted the Office of Inspector General about misconduct including nepotism and contracting violations in 2011. After an initial investigation found wrongdoing, Carter again alerted the OIG in 2014 that the staff continued to split purchases to smaller dollar amounts to avoid competitive bids. While park officials will not comment because of privacy rights, additional training has been provided to the staff…
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Miami-Dade IG Uncovers Airport Insurance Scam

Posted on January09, 2015
A recent press release from Miami-Dade Inspector General Mary T. Cagle reported that the OIG investigation into insurance company Sabal Insurance Group had found over $400,000 in over-billing to Miami-Dade's airport and Quality Aircraft Services Inc. The insurance company and president, Ian Norris, were charged with five counts of grand theft after inflating prices for workers compensation and general liability insurance. The investigation was launched thanks to a whistle-blower who came forward and outlined the scheme. According to the warrant,…
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NCUA IG to Investigate Recent Data Breach

Posted on January03, 2015
The National Credit Union Administration suffered a major security breach when an examiner lost a thumb drive containing information about members of the Palm Springs Federal Credit Union in October 2014. While the thumb drive did not contain PINs or passwords, it did contain names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and account numbers of the members. NCUA IG James Hagen will now conduct an audit to test the controls in place and why the NCUA initially concealed the breach. A spokesman…
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HHS OIG Recovers Nearly $5 Billion in 2014

Posted on December22, 2014
America's taxpayers are expected to see $4.9 billion in improperly spent Federal health care dollars returned to the Government from oversight and investigations conducted this year by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), according to a report issued this month. The $4.9 billion in expected recoveries for FY 2014 consist of nearly $834.7 million in program audits and about $4.1 billion in investigative work - which includes about $1.1 billion in…
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Former DHS-OIG Special Agent in Charge Sentenced to Prison

Posted on December18, 2014
A former agent with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Office of the Inspector General has been sentenced to three years in prison following a 2013 indictment in Texas for falsifying records and obstruction of justice. The indictment came after a September 2011 internal inspection of the McAllen Field Office. Prior to the inspection, Special Agent in Charge Eugenio Pedraza instructed subordinates to "engage in a scheme to falsify documents in open criminal investigative case files, including numerous investigations in…
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Newly Created NYPD IG Asked to Review Police Misconduct

Posted on December12, 2014
The New York Police Department OIG was created last year and works at the direction of the City Council. In response to the recent death of a New York man during an arrest, the City Council has requested a probe into how the NYPD tracks, monitors, and addresses alleged abuses. Appointed in March, this will be the first known investigation for IG Philip Eure. Additionally, the City Council will also expand the Civilian Complaint Review Board to include more neighborhood…
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