Recent findings by former federal investigator Diane Cutler suggest that the U.S. government may have made duplicate payments for projects at laboratories in Wuhan, China.
These payments were funded through the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to support high-risk research in China before the COVID-19 pandemic.
The potential misuse of government funds raises concerns about the management of resources and the supervision of hazardous pathogens and research.
With over 20 years of experience in investigating white-collar crime and healthcare fraud, Cutler examined more than 50,000 documents during her inquiry.
She discovered that the U.S. government might have made double payments for items such as medical supplies, equipment, travel, and salaries. Senator Roger Marshall of Kansas, who employed Cutler, brought these findings to USAID, which has initiated a new investigation.
Senator Marshall emphasized the importance of this issue for American taxpayers, comparing it to a plane crash investigation.
He believes understanding the cause is vital to prevent future incidents. The implications of these findings extend beyond financial mismanagement, as the possibility of an accidental lab leak contributing to the pandemic’s origin is still being explored by intelligence agencies.
In a recent congressional hearing about the origins of COVID-19, the House unanimously voted for a bill demanding the declassification of intelligence on the matter.
Former CDC director Robert Redfield testified that funding for high-risk virus research in Wuhan came from various sources, including the NIH, the State Department, USAID, and the Defense Department.