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GAO Buys Fake Submarine Parts From China

by John Reed on March 28, 2012

Remember how the Senate Armed Services Committee held a rather dramaitc hearing on the flood of counterfeit weapons parts coming from China a few months ago?

Well, as part of the committee’s investigation into the problem, lawmakers asked the Government Accountability Office to buy weapons parts from Chinese companies (that U.S. weapons companies sometimes buy from) to see if the Chinese government is doing anything to crack down on the massive problem. A shadow company set up by GAO to buy the parts specifically requested brand new parts for F-15 Eagles, MV-22 Ospreys and two nuclear submarines. What did they get? You guessed it, fake parts from China!

How massive is the problem? Over one million fake weapons parts have been identified as coming from Chinese companies since 2009. You don’t have to be  genius to see the safety nightmare presented by fake parts on incredibly complex systems like submarines, fighter jets and tiltrotors.

From the sounds of it, Beijing has yet to act.

Here’s what a new Reuters article has to say:

U.S. government investigators, using a fictitious company, were able to easily find electronic parts for weapons from China on the Internet and every single item they bought was counterfeit, despite China’s pledge to crack down on fake products.

A new report by the congressional Government Accountability Office showed that 334 of 396 vendors who offered to sell parts to the fictitious company were from China.

It said all 16 parts eventually purchased by the fake company came from 13 China-based vendors and all were determined by an independent testing laboratory to be counterfeit.

“These findings should outrage every American,” said Senator Carl Levin, the Michigan Democrat who heads the Senate Armed Services Committee, calling the new report “deeply troubling.”

“The Chinese government’s refusal to shut down counterfeiting that occurs openly in their country puts our national security and the safety of our military men and women at risk. It also costs thousands of American jobs.

Click here to read more about this serious problem.

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