Contractors Charged with Faking Tests, Selling Bogus Parts
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Two defense contractors and five executives were indicted Thursday on charges of defrauding the Pentagon, one by faking test results on electronics, the other by selling reconditioned aircraft parts as new.
Consolidated Aeronautics Corp. of North Hollywood and its top two officers were charged with one count of conspiracy and four of submitting false claims about hydraulic parts provided under a $1 million contract beginning in 1984.
Another indictment accused Genisco Technology Corp. of Rancho Dominguez and one current and two former executives of conspiracy and falsely certifying that sensing devices used in air-to-ground missiles and helicopters had been tested.
The parts in the Consolidated contract were destined for use in the steering systems of A-7, F-4 and F-104 jet fighters, the B-52 bomber and the C-141 transport plane.
The hydraulic parts were certified by the company as new but actually had been refurbished, the indictment alleged. All the parts that have been tested failed, and flight crews could have been endangered had the parts been used, officials said.
Consolidated could be fined $3.5 million if convicted.
Also charged were Gordon Strube, 65, of Beverly Hills, Consolidated president and chief executive officer, and Ronald Guy, 42, of Granada Hills, vice president of sales.
Telephone calls to the company’s number went unanswered Thursday.
If convicted, Strube could be sentenced to up to 7 1/2 years in prison and fined up to $1.25 million; Guy faces up to 15 years in prison and a $750,000 fine.
The Genisco contract was worth ″several hundred thousand dollars a year″ said Gary Feess, chief assistant U.S. attorney. Genisco faces a maximum $7.5 million fine.
Genisco attorney Tom Holliday suggested that any wrongdoing was the fault of officers and former officers of the company’s transducer products division in Simi Valley, and he called indictment of the company unwarranted.
Also charged were Werner Brinkschulte, 50, of Simi Valley, former general manager of the division; Danny K. Evans, 34, of Simi Valley, former division supervisor, and Robert L. Kersnick, 51, of Sepulveda, quality assurance manager of the division.
The three face, if convicted, up to five years in prison and fines of up to $250,000 on each count.
The transducers, the size and shape of small cigars, measure pressure in liquid or gas. They are used to help guide the High-Speed Anti-Radar Missile, which is fired from planes; to measure oil pressure in the Coast Guard’s HH- 65A Dolphin search-and-rescue helicopter, and to operate a Navy torpedo test device.