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Jim McElhatton

Jim McElhatton

Jim McElhatton is an investigative reporter for The Washington Times. He can be reached at jmcelhatton@washingtontimes.com.

Articles by Jim McElhatton

Government watchdog mismanages its own funds

The government watchdog that recently chided the State Department for losing track of billions of dollars in contracts has had its own troubles with procurement mismanagement. Published April 23, 2014

Burwell

HHS nominee Sylvia Burwell entangled in MetLife lawsuit

Sylvia Mathews Burwell, President Obama's nominee to lead the country's health care overhaul, remains entangled in a lawsuit brought by shareholders of MetLife accusing her of misleading investors as a director of one of the country's biggest insurance companies. Published April 15, 2014

Sylvia Mathews Burwell filed detailed financial forms that provide a rare glimpse into how a major corporate foundation pays its executives. (Associated Press)

HHS nominee got $1.2M at 'zero' salary job at Wal-Mart

During her brief but lucrative stint as president of Wal-Mart's charitable foundation in 2012, Sylvia Matthews Burwell received at least $750,000 in bonuses from an organization that doles out hundreds of millions of dollars in contributions but keeps a tight lid on its own compensation practices, records show. Published April 14, 2014

Zachary Quinto (left) as Spock and Chris Pine as Kirk appear in a scene from the film "Star Trek: Into Darkness." (AP Photo/Paramount Pictures, Zade Rosenthal)

Federal workers watch 'Star Trek' on clock

Exploring new frontiers in time and attendance fraud, a group of federal employees and contractors spent one day last summer at a local restaurant followed by an afternoon watching the latest "Star Trek" movie — all at taxpayers' expense. Published April 10, 2014

** FILE ** This Jan. 31, 2010, file image released by Miami Dade College shows Dr. Salomon Melgen, posing for a photo at the book signing of "Growing American Roots," a book by Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J., at the college in Miami. (AP Photo/Miami Dade College, Phil Roche, File)

Sen. Menendez pal Salomon Melgen collected $20 million from Medicare

A Florida eye doctor whose office was raided by federal authorities last year, prompting scrutiny of his close ties to New Jersey Democratic Sen. Bob Menendez, billed Medicare more than $20 million in 2012 alone, newly released records show. Published April 9, 2014

Snapshots posted on an internal GSA website from the $823,000 four-day affair in Las Vegas in 2010. Photos/HANDOUT

Watchdog who exposed lavish Vegas conference retires

The government watchdog who blew the whistle on a lavish taxpayer-funded conference in Las Vegas, setting off a chain of events that saw agencies across government keep a closer eye on travel and conference spending, is retiring. Published April 7, 2014

One of the more high-profile examples of law enforcement database misuse involved a New York City police officer and would-be cannibal, Gilbert Valle, who was arrested in 2012 on charges of conspiring to torture, rape, kill, cook and eat women, and using the information center to track down his targets. He was arrested before putting his plans into action, and a jury last month found him guilty of conspiracy. (Associated Press)

Snooping in sensitive or off-limits databases a growing problem

An investigative analyst for the Department of Housing and Urban Development's office of inspector general "misused his position" to dig up criminal history and personal information through the FBI's criminal database —the latest example of government employees snooping into sensitive electronic law enforcement files. Published April 3, 2014

The exterior of the Internal Revenue Service building in Washington is seen here on March 22, 2013. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Disgraced IRS contractor charged in murder

The chief executive of a company that won a half-billion dollars in IRS work then became the public face of a set-aside contract scandal last year was charged Tuesday in the murder of his estranged wife in Loudoun County, Va. Published April 2, 2014

Lockheed sees surge in profits after shutdown

This time a year ago, Lockheed Martin officials warned of impending layoffs, furloughs and a devastating impact to its massive supplier base as sequestration hit across the federal government. But in the end, things didn't turn out so bad for the government's top contractor. Published April 1, 2014

A scrap dealer has brought suit against the National Park Service, claiming the federal government shortchanged him nearly $250,000 for land it purchased for the Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania. (Associated Press)

Company claims underpayment for land sold for 9/11 memorial

A federal judge has ordered the National Park Service to review a scrap dealer's claims that the federal government shortchanged his company when buying land for the Flight 93 National Memorial in Pennsylvania. Published March 31, 2014

Fraud still rife despite scrutiny of background check system

Despite heightened concerns over holes in the federal government's system for conducting employee background checks, complaints about investigators filing fraudulent or falsified records have led to 35 cases in fiscal 2013. Published March 26, 2014

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson.

EPA arms Democrats with data, snubs Republicans

With midterm elections not far off, Democratic opposition researchers are armed with thousands of pages of records obtained from the Environmental Protection Agency, far outpacing known Republican efforts to pry information loose from the agency. Published March 18, 2014

Saint Elizabeths Hospital

Mental institution release request languishes

Federal prosecutors in Washington say a man locked up in a city hospital for the criminally insane since stealing a $20 necklace in 1971 should remain there, but are still offering no clues on why his bid for release has languished in the courts for nearly six years. Published March 17, 2014