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Lawmakers order deeper TransDigm probe by DoD watchdog

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WASHINGTON ― It’s not over yet for TransDigm, the defense contractor forced to repay the government $16 million in overcharges amid heat from U.S. lawmakers.

Members of the House Oversight and Government Committee, weeks after grilling TransDigm’s chairman at a hearing on Capitol Hill, on Thursday requested the Department of Defense Inspector General probe the aircraft parts supplier.

The request came in a letter to DoDIG from Committee chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md.; National Security sub-panel chairman Stephen Lynch, D-Mass., and members Jackie Speier and Ro Khanna, both Democrats from California.

The lawmakers worry the overcharges may be widespread because the previous DoDIG examination only covered a small sample of TransDigm’s contracts―and still found the Defense Logistics Agency and Army overpaid for nearly all the contracts it reviewed. Khanna asked the agency to investigate TransDigm in 2017.

“Because you identified so many overcharges in just the small sample of contracts you examined, we believe it is highly likely that TransDigm is receiving additional excess profits that have not yet been identified,” the lawmakers wrote.

Days after members at the hearing repeatedly asked TransDigm at its May 15 hearing to repay the money, TransDigm sent the Defense Department an $11.5 million installment.

The outrage has been bipartisan. Last month, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, sent a letter to acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan, President Donald Trump’s intended nominee to lead the department, seeking more information.

The lawmakers asked that DoDIG review all contracts awarded to TransDigm by DoD from 2017 to the present, with a value between $200,000 and $250,000, and between $600,000 and $750,000.

TransDigm told the committee it received $782 million in revenue from 7,931 contracts with DoD between 2015 and 2019.

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