US Government Duplicate Payments at China’s Wuhan Lab
The United States government has reportedly made duplicate payments to fund projects at the lab in Wuhan, China, the proposed origin of the coronavirus pandemic.
Through the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the laboratory in Wuhan in communist-controlled China has received double the funds from research grants, according to a records review by CBS News.
Diane Cutler, a federal investigator who has investigated white-collar crimes for more than 20 years, called double billing a “potential theft of public funds.”
“What I have found so far is evidence that points to double billing, a potential theft of public funds. This is concerning, especially since it involves dangerous pathogens and risky research,” Cutler said.
Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS) hired Cutler to investigate U.S. government grants for high-risk research in China before the coronavirus pandemic. His findings were later shared with USAID’s internal watchdog. Tens of millions of dollars could potentially have been stolen and sources close to the situation have not denied the report. According to CBS News:
Cutler said she viewed more than 50,000 documents and the US government may have made duplicate payments for possible medical supplies, equipment, travel and salaries.
A USAID spokesperson declined to comment. A spokesperson for the USAID inspector general declined to comment on “the existence of a specific open investigation.” The NIH press office did not respond to questions from CBS News.
Sources told CBS News that the investigation into possible double billing could take at least six months to conclude.
Senator Marshall called for a congressional commission to investigate the grant funds that were sent to the Wuhan lab.
“I think there are 1.1 million reasons American taxpayers should care,” he said. “You will have a crashing plane. We want to know why the plane crashed. We strive to do so. And the hope is that we won’t have another plane crash for the same reason.
Marshall also told the New York Post that “Americans deserve the truth, especially if our government helped fund the creation of the coronavirus.”
“I demand transparency and accountability for the misuse of taxpayer funds. This probe is a step in the right direction. You have to follow the money,” he said.
Although the exact origins of the coronavirus pandemic have not been determined, intelligence officials are now saying the lab leak theory has merit and should not be dismissed.
At the end of February, FBI Director Christopher Wray indicated that the coronavirus could have originated from the laboratory in Wuhan.
“The FBI has for some time now assessed that the origins of the pandemic are most likely a potential lab incident in Wuhan,” Wray told Fox News. “Here you’re talking about a potential leak from a Chinese government-controlled lab.”
“I will just make the observation that the Chinese government, it seems to me, has done its best to try to thwart and obscure the work here, the work that we are doing, the work that our American government and our close foreign partners made. And that’s unfortunate for everyone,” he added.
Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) then quoted Wray’s statement at the House Select Committee hearing on communist China when he asked former deputy national security adviser Matthew Pottinger if the totalitarian regime had created the coronavirus as a biological weapon.
“Mr. Pottinger, less than an hour ago FBI Director Christopher Wray confirmed that COVID-19 originated from a lab in Wuhan. Do you think there is any chance that the lab from Wuhan is involved in bio-weapons research?” Banks asked.
Pottinger said intelligence shows the Chinese government and Chinese military certainly experimented with the coronavirus, stopping to call it a bioweapon.
“We know for sure that the Chinese military is involved in research on the coronavirus,” he said. “We know they were experimenting using American technology to work on chimeric viruses. They are the ones that were designed.
“We know that the Chinese government and military have been involved in trying to develop coronavirus vaccines. I think this is an area where there is still a lot of information to come out that will show that there has been huge interest,” he added.
Member of the committee @RepJimBanks: Is there a chance that the Wuhan lab is involved in bioweapons research?
Matthew Pottinger: We know the Chinese military is involved in coronavirus research. pic.twitter.com/G2OoxZBiPV
— The CPC Select Committee (@committeeonccp) March 1, 2023