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Whistleblower watchdog accused of altering retaliation reports

Boca Raton residents may be interested to learn that a U.S. senator has accused the Pentagon's internal watchdog office of changing the results of whistleblower retaliation investigations. The allegations were made on April 27.

During a discussion on the Senate floor, Sen. Chuck Grassley said that the Defense Department Office of the Inspector General altered its investigation findings on Rear Adm. Brian Losey. Losey was found guilty of retaliating against several whistleblowers, and Pentagon officials were allegedly attempting to cover up his actions. However, a 2015 article by The Washington Post publicly exposed the allegations, and Losey was forced to retire.

Grassley further alleged that the Defense Department may have altered the results of other similar cases. He also said Deputy Inspector General Marguerite Garrison neglected the department's whistleblower hotline, allowing many cases to be delayed or forgotten. He said the department could not be trusted to oversee federal whistleblower cases if its managers are altering reports and retaliating against their own employees. He said it may be necessary for the Office of Special Counsel to conduct an independent review of the Pentagon inspector general.

Under the False Claims Act, employees can report work-related safety violations, illegal activity and fraud to the federal government without fear of retaliation. However, some employees face termination, transfers or other on-the-job harassment when they attempt to file whistleblower complaints. In such cases, it may be necessary for employees to seek whistleblower legal help in order to ensure their rights are protected.

Source: District Sentinel, "Pentagon Watchdog Accused of 'Doctoring" Whistleblower Retaliation Investigation Findings", Sam Knight, April 27, 2017

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