Counterfeit Chinese parts 'flood' US military equipment
WASHINGTON - A huge number of fake Chinese electronics parts are being used in US military equipments, a key senate committee report has concluded, after a more-than-year-long investigation.
"Our report outlines how this flood of counterfeit parts, overwhelmingly from China, threatens national security, the safety of our troops and American jobs," said Sen. Carl Levin, D-Michigan, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee that conducted the probe.
The panel has found 1,800 cases of fake parts in US military aircraft and said over 70 per cent of an estimated one million suspect parts were traced back to China.
The investigators dug through the supply chain for three types of suspected counterfeit parts on US military aircraft before concluding that the SH-60B navy helicopter that hunts for enemy submarines and assists with surface warfare contained counterfeit parts in its night-vision system.
It also found fake parts in the C-130 and C-27 cargo planes that could have caused the systems that tell pilots about the aircraft's performances go blank.
The P8-A, a navy version of the Boeing 737 used for anti-submarine warfare, has been found containing a reworked part that never should have been on the airplane. The aircraft is under trial and the navy intends to buy more than 100 of them.
The probe blamed weaknesses in the US supply chain, and China's failure to curb the counterfeit market.
"Counterfeit electronic parts are sold openly in public markets in China. Rather than acknowledging the problem and moving aggressively to shut down counterfeiters, the Chinese government has tried to avoid scrutiny," the report said.
The UK and Canada were also found to be the next-largest source countries after China for the fake parts.
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