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Investigations You Need to Read: Friday

Among Friday's investigations: Pfizer paid $35 million to doctors and medical centers to consult on its behalf, and retired military officers will now have to disclose their business ties with defense contractors.

Today in accountability news:

  • Pfizer, the world's largest drug maker, disclosed that, in 2009, it paid more than $35 million to 4,500 doctors and 250 academic medical centers and research groups for consulting on its behalf or conducting clinical trials, according to The New York Times.
  • USA Today reports that retired military officers who have been paid hundreds of dollars an hour to advise the military will now have to disclose their business ties with defense contractors. Past investigations have found that these military "mentors" were collecting pay from the government as well as from their defense clients.
  • Hundreds of pending drug cases have been dismissed because of "possible thefts, sloppy evidence handling, and other problems" in a San Francisco police drug lab. The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the problems could go back several years.
  • The Chicago Tribune found that an Illinois Senate candidate's family bank loaned $20 million to felons in 2004, while he was working there as a senior loan officer.
  • The Justice Department has filed a civil suit against defense contractor KBR, reports The Washington Post. The suit alleges that KBR lied about charging the government for the unauthorized subcontracting of private security guards in Iraq. KBR argues that the Army breached its contract by failing to provide its employees with enough protection, necessitating private security services.
  • The New York Times reports that a federal court's ruling on warrantless surveillance challenges the Obama administration's silence on Bush-era counterterrorism policies.

These stories are part of our ongoing roundup of investigations from other news outlets. For more, visit our Investigations Elsewhere page.

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