Danger Room: Food Fight: Contractor Accused of $750 Million Overcharge for Wartime Grub

24.05.12

Categorie: Accountability, Afghanistan, Logistics, Robert Beckhusen, Wired |
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Marine Lance Cpl. Robert Dearborn guides a truck carrying boxes of food at Patrol Base Alcatraz, Afghanistan on Aug. 26, 2011. Photo: DVIDS

Marine Lance Cpl. Robert Dearborn guides a truck carrying boxes of food at Patrol Base Alcatraz, Afghanistan on Aug. 26, 2011. Photo: DVIDS

by ROBERT BECKHUSEN

In 2008, the Pentagon began investigating whether the main supplier of food to troops in Afghanistan overcharged taxpayers. Since then, there have been audits, recriminations and the discovery that the supplier may have overbilled the military as much as $756.9 million. Now lawmakers are squeezing both the Pentagon and the contractor in an attempt to find out what happened.

That’s according to a statement released today from the two heads of the House Subcommittee on National Security, Homeland Defense and Foreign Operations. The congressmen want documents and information within 10 days from both the Pentagon’s Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) and the Switzerland-based company, Supreme Foodservice GmbH. This might be difficult, because the Pentagon has alleged Supreme Foodservice — which has been paid $5.5 billion since 2005 to supply food to more than 250 bases and outposts – did not maintain invoices and truck manifests (.pdf) while transporting food, water and other materiel; nor did the company provide data to investigators on fuel costs, price estimates and even correct flight plans.

Read the rest at Danger Room.

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