By Torsten Ove
Employees reported to work as normal Wednesday at a Johnstown-area defense contractor raided by federal agents the day before.
Defense Department investigators and agents with the Criminal Investigation Division of the IRS spent most of Tuesday executing two search warrants at Concurrent Technologies Corp., a nonprofit in Richland established 25 years ago by the late U.S. Rep. John Murtha.
Company spokeswoman Mary Bevan said she didn't know what the agents were looking for but said they hauled away boxes of business records and left in the afternoon.
The search warrants are sealed and the U.S. attorney's office in Pittsburgh refused to comment.
CTC has received hundreds of millions of dollars in defense contracts, mostly in applied research in metallurgy and related fields, since it was founded as Metalworking Technology in 1987. The company also does non-defense research, such as its current work with the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia in trying to produce cheaper pennies.
The nature of the investigation isn't clear, but a watchdog group, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, had previously filed a freedom of information request with the Justice Department and the FBI, asking for all information pertaining to an FBI investigation of Mr. Murtha and defense contractors he championed over the years.
That FOIA request mentions CTC and its connections to a lobbying firm run by Paul Magliocchetti, a Beechview native who went to prison for illegally channeling campaign contributions to House members, including Mr. Murtha.
Mr. Magliocchetti, who was released from prison earlier this year, had helped CTC and other Murtha-linked companies receive government contracts. Mr. Magliocchetti couldn't be reached Wednesday but his lawyer, William Lawler, said he had no knowledge of the CTC investigation.
The FBI has released heavily-redacted information about its probe of Mr. Murtha, but Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Government said Wednesday that the organization continues to challenge the Justice Department to release more.
The group is also waiting on a FOIA request for records pertaining to the Magliocchetti investigation.
Torsten Ove: firstname.lastname@example.org or 412-263-1510. First Published September 11, 2013 10:15 AM