Base-level program strives to identify, neutralize fraud at WPAFB

What is fraud, waste and abuse? According to Jay Mejia, Air Force Office of Special Investigations, “Fraud, waste or abuse is a potential problem that can drain significant resources and ultimately rob American taxpayers.”

The base-level fraud program strives to identify and neutralize fraud at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. Waste and abuse cases are usually investigated by an Inspector General function, while fraud is investigated by AFOSI.

According to the Department of Defense inspector general, fraud is defined as “Any intentional deception designed to unlawfully deprive the United States of something of value or to secure from the United States for an individual a benefit, privilege, allowance or consideration to which he or she is not entitled. Such practices include, but are not limited to, the offer, payment or acceptance of bribes or gratuities; making false statements; submitting false claims; using false weights or measures; evading or corrupting inspectors or other officials; deceit either by suppressing the truth or misrepresenting material fact; adulterating or substituting materials; falsifying records and books of accounts; arranging for secret profits, kickbacks, or commissions; and conspiring to use any of these devices. The term also includes conflict of interest cases, criminal irregularities, and the unauthorized disclosure of official information relating to procurement and disposal matters.”

While there are many different types of fraud that can occur, Mejia explained what the most common schemes are.

“Product substitution, cost mischarging, public corruption or bribery, defective pricing with fraudulent intent and conflict of interest are all schemes people or organizations committing fraud usually do,” Mejia said.

The Base Level Fraud Team with the 10th Field Investigations Squadron at Wright-Patterson are available to provide training to units in person on some of the common schemes and indicators of fraud. If you are unsure about a specific instance constituting fraud, waste or abuse, contact the local IG office or call in the report.

You can report these occurrences by calling 937-257-4553, e-mailing, or in person at Bldg. 70 in Area A.

If you know that fraud, waste or abuse is occurring in your workplace, AFOSI encourages you to report it.

“It is our duty to protect the U.S. Air Force against fraud. It saves valuable resources by identifying illegal, inefficient and wasteful practices; it also makes funds available for other, better uses,” according to the DoD inspector general.

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