Feds end probe of Murtha-connected Johnstown defense contractor
Western Pennsylvania's top federal prosecutor has closed an investigation without filing criminal charges against a defense contractor with longstanding ties to the late U.S. Rep. John Murtha.
U.S. Attorney David Hickton announced on Friday in a one-paragraph statement that Concurrent Technologies Corp. fully cooperated with investigators.
Hickton announced the inquiry into the company in September after federal agents raided Concurrent's Johnstown offices. At the time, Hickton confirmed an investigation but declined to comment on the nature of it.
Concurrent, also known as CTC, has received hundreds of millions dollars worth of defense contracts since it was founded as Metalworking Technology Inc. in 1987.
The company's president and CEO, Edward Sheehan Jr., said the firm cooperated with the probe by producing “substantial records for review.”
“We are extremely pleased with the government's decision and appreciate that this matter has been brought to a close,” Sheehan said. “CTC has always been and will continue to be a federally compliant contractor.”
Murtha, who died in 2010 after decades representing a Johnstown-area district, chaired a powerful House subcommittee that oversaw the Pentagon's budget. Several federal investigations have targeted defense companies that received multimillion-dollar contracts during his tenure, lobbying related to those contracts and donations made to Murtha and other congressional candidates.
Concurrent focuses on defense issues but also does environmental, engineering, energy and other research. One such project included working with the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia on ways to produce cheaper pennies.
Last month, the company was awarded a $15.3 million contract to develop technology for a Navy minesweeping helicopter.
A Washington watchdog group, the Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics, sued the Justice Department seeking information on a variety of investigations into Murtha and defense firms linked to him, including CTC. A representative for the group would not comment on Hickton's decision.
The group also sought details on brothers William and Ronald Kuchera. In December, they were fined and given 18 months house arrest as part of five-year probation sentences for a kickback scheme involving an $8.2 million contract obtained by a Murtha earmark for their company, Kuchera Defense Systems Inc. of Windber.
Concurrent and its principals have never been charged criminally. The Justice Department subpoenaed the company's records in 2008 and prosecuted Paul Magliocchetti, a lobbyist who helped it and other Murtha-linked businesses get federal contracts.
Magliocchetti was sentenced in 2011 in Virginia to 27 months in federal prison for illegally funneling more than $380,000 in campaign contributions to Murtha and other members of Congress who controlled the Pentagon's budget. Defense contractors hired his firm to influence Murtha and other key lawmakers who earmarked money for favored companies.
Magliocchetti acknowledged having relatives, friends and lobbyists write personal checks to support congressional candidates to obscure his influence before reimbursing the donors.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Philadelphia U.S. Rep. Fattah indicted in racketeering case
- Patriots QB Brady, owner Kraft lash out at NFL
- Rossi: ‘Hockey guy’ Sutter will be missed
- Pirates notebook: Prospect Tucker unaware of ‘trade’ frenzy
- Steelers’ Wheaton adjusting his game moving to slot receiver
- Kang’s 9th-inning home run gives Pirates wild victory over Twins
- Driver accused of crashing head-on into Ligonier officer’s SUV waives right to preliminary hearing
- School credit ratings a problem for several in Western Pennsylvania
- 5 face trial in beating of black man in Pittsburgh
- Travelers find direct Web route to Priory’s spirited past in North Side
- Van Halen plays plenty of favorites in First Niagara show