My last duty assignment for the Air Force was to transfer software to the Air Force for the C-130 Avionics Modernization Program. Exposure to that program revealed many questionable acts. For example: C-130 AMP development started with a fixed-price subcontract for system software development. Over several years, the program office paid the entire agreed fixed price for accomplishment of less than half of the software development task. Then, in spite of the subcontractor’s default, the program office administratively “converted” the fixed-price software-development subcontract to cost-plus. Now, over the passage of nine more years, the program office has paid more than ten times the original fixed price for C-130 AMP software development.
I filed a criminal complaint with the FBI to report this action and several other acts that I believe constitute federal crimes. If these crimes go uncorrected, in addition to gross overpayment for system development, they will likely embezzle system specifications and software that cost the public over $1.5B. In turn, illicit developer sole possession and control of system specifications and software will create a false absence of competition that will likely result in (1) the public paying whatever the developer wants for system production and sustainment throughout the life of the program and (2) the public paying for redevelopment instead of reuse of C-130 AMP specifications and software that could satisfy similar requirements in other programs.
The FBI deferred my complaint to the Air Force Office of Special Investigation. Two years have passed with no indication that they have done anything other than cooperatively squelch my complaint.
More important than this case itself is that it shows fraud and cover-up could exist in every defense acquisition program. The largest defense acquisition programs could account for trillions of dollars in public loss and debt, and major degradation of national security.