Stolen and sensitive US military equipment, including fighter jet parts wanted by Iran and nuclear biological protective gear, has been available to the highest bidder on popular Internet sales sites, according to congressional investigators.
Using undercover identities, investigators purchased a dozen defence-related items on the auction site eBay and the online network Craigslist from January 2007 through last month and received the items “no questions asked”.
The US defence department regards much of the stolen equipment to be on the US Munitions List, meaning there are restrictions on their overseas sales, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has said.
The equipment could land in international brokers’ hands or be transferred overseas, said the GAO, Congress’ investigative arm.
“Many of the sensitive items we purchased could have been used directly against our troops and allies, or reverse engineered to develop counter measures or equivalent technologies,” the investigators said.