Spc. Robert Bernales, a Soldier assigned to 3rd Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, fires an M320 Grenade Launcher Module in the kneeling position during weapons qualifications at Fort Stewart, Ga., Oct. 1, 2019 (U.S. Army/Spc. Jordyn Worshek)

A Grand Junction, Colorado weapons manufacturer will pay more than $1 million to the U.S. Army for selling the service defective grenade launchers with parts that the company knew were not up to standard.

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A U.S. Navy F-14 Tomcat aircraft flies a combat mission in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom on Aug. 14, 2004. (U.S. Navy/Staff Sgt. Lee O. Tucker)

Editor's Note: This article by Gina Harkins originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

Navy aircraft were sidelined as they awaited parts last year that the service actually had in a warehouse. The problem? They didn't even know the warehouse was there.

"Not only did we not know that the parts existed, we didn't even know the warehouse existed," Thomas Modly, the Navy's No. 2 civilian said at last week's annual Military Reporters and Editors conference.

The issue was discovered in last year's Navy- and Marine Corps-wide audit, which Modly said has helped the sea services correct some serious problems tracking inventory it owns.

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Navy Reserve Lt. Cmdr. James Nash, the pharmacy officer in charge for the DAEOC Tri-State Innovative Readiness Training (IRT) 2019, counts medicine tablets June 13, 2019, during the IRT at Ballard Memorial High School in Barlow, Ky. Nash is the on-site pharmacist for the Barlow location and the only pharmacist assigned to this IRT training mission. (U.S. Air National Guard / Senior Airman Sarah M. McClanahan)

Editor's note: This article by Patricia Kime originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

For those who saw a loophole, it was easy money.

In 2013, a handful of pharmacy companies that make compounded medications — personalized dosages or formulas normally crafted for patients who can't tolerate certain ingredients — discovered they could make treatments such as pain and scar creams, wound ointments and erectile dysfunction drugs, and market them to patients enrolled in Tricare.

Then, they could bill the government a hefty sum, between $400 and $10,000 per prescription, making enough to cover the cost of beneficiaries' co-payments, provide kickbacks to participating physicians and middlemen, and generously pad their own pockets.

When the Defense Health Agency's losses caused by these specious prescriptions topped nearly $1.5 billion in the first half of 2015, the Pentagon moved to restrict its coverage of all compounded medications.

And the Justice Department began pursuing the unscrupulous pharmacists, doctors, marketers and salesmen involved, including military troops who saw the largest case of medical fraud in the Pentagon's history as a chance to make cash on the side.

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A former pharmacist from Irving has been sentenced to two years in federal prison for his role in a health-care kickback scheme that scammed the military's insurance program out of more than $100 million, court records show.

Ravi Morisetty, 44, is one of 13 defendants, including doctors and marketers, in the Trilogy Pharmacy case, and he is the first to be sentenced. He pleaded guilty last year to his role in the fraud.

The pharmacy's two owners, Jeffrey Fuller and Andrew Baumiller, also have pleaded guilty in the case and are awaiting sentencing.

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A morale patch on the backpack of U.S. Air Force Command Chief Master Sgt. Thomas James, senior enlisted advisor to the California Military Department adjutant general, reads that the fun meter is set to max during his visit to Camp San Luis Obispo, California, as part of a Federal Legislative Field Day, Sept. 18, 2018. (U.S. Air National Guard/Senior Airman Crystal Housman)

Allegations of retaliation against whistleblowers in the California National Guard are more widespread than the complaints made at a Fresno air base that led to a dramatic leadership shakeup of the organization earlier this month, The Times has found.

Interviews with current and former Guard members and an examination of internal documents show that complaints go well beyond Fresno and extend to the army side as well. The allegations have come from fighter pilots, a top military prosecutor, Special Forces officers and a colonel who hoped to head the organization.

They allege a pattern of both retaliation against whistleblowers and others who accuse their superiors of misconduct and a failure of the Guard's justice system to protect them.

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(DoD photo)

Thomas Brock, a South Carolina man who betrayed his wife, double-crossed a friend and cheated the federal government of more than $150 million in military construction contracts, will be going to federal prison for 51 months.

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