Report | Sept. 27, 2021

Audit of U.S. Special Operations Command Maritime Precision Engagement Funds (DODIG-2021-130)

Audit

Publicly Released: September 29, 2021

 

Objective

The objective of this audit was to determine whether the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), Special Operations Forces, Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics (SOF-AT&L) appropriately allocated funds to validated requirements for the Maritime Precision Engagement (MPE) program in accordance with DoD and USSOCOM guidance. We initiated this audit based on a complaint the DoD Office of Inspector General received through the DoD Hotline, and we reviewed specific allegations related to the audit objective.

 

Background

On September 24, 2020, the DoD Office of Inspector General received a hotline complaint making several allegations against USSOCOM SOF-AT&L personnel alleging that they:

  • improperly used funds for unvalidated requirements;
     
  • misrepresented and misreported program status, resulting in a deceptive use of taxpayer money;
     
  • misappropriated funds; and
     
  • did not follow USSOCOM policy.

The Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior, Program Management Office–Special Operations Forces Lethality, manages the Precision Strike Systems. Precision Strike Systems are a family of interoperable weapon systems designed to operate in various configurations, including portable by Soldiers in the field, vehicle mounted, and maritime platforms. SOF-AT&L separated the maritime and ground platforms of the Precision Strike Systems into the MPE and the Ground Organic Precision Strike System, respectively.

The MPE program consists of weapons systems that are deployed on combatant craft and capable of targeting individuals, groups, vehicles, and small oceangoing craft with low collateral (surrounding area) damage. The MPE program comprises two separate efforts: MPE–Munitions and MPE–Integration. The MPE–Munitions program is managed by Program Management Office–Naval Special Warfare within Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior, and the MPE–Integration program is managed by Program Management Office–Surface Systems within Program Executive Office–Maritime. The Ground Organic Precision Strike System program is managed by Program Management Office–Special Operations Forces Lethality, also within Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior.

 

Finding

USSOCOM SOF-AT&L personnel appropriately allocated MPE funds to validated requirements for the MPE–Munitions and MPE–Integration programs in accordance with DoD and USSOCOM guidance. Specifically, SOF-AT&L personnel appropriately reprogrammed or realigned $10.6 million in funds from the validated MPE programs to other validated programs within the Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior and Program Executive Office–Maritime portfolios that were underfunded due to unforeseen requirements; or to improve capabilities in support of the warfighter.

However, initial funding transactions within the Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior portfolio were not transparent because the office’s personnel included the MPE–Munitions and Ground Organic Precision Strike System programs in a single fund line with other USSOCOM programs that were not related to the Precision Strike Systems family of systems. In May 2019, Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior personnel initiated corrective actions and moved the MPE–Munitions and Ground Organic Precision Strike System programs into a separate fund line to delineate the funds, which enhanced Program Executive Office–Special Operations Forces Warrior’s transparency and ability to track the funds for both programs.

This report is a result of Project No. D2021-D000AW-0035.000.