Semiannual Report to Congress #60 (April 1, 2019 to September 30, 2019)

November 18, 2019 |  Semiannual Reports

I am pleased to submit the Amtrak Office of Inspector
General Semiannual Report to the United States
Congress for the six months ending September 30,
2019. This is the 60th semiannual report we have
produced since our establishment in 1988.

During this period, our investigators identified a fraud
scheme in which criminals used stolen credit cards to
buy Amtrak tickets, cancel the tickets in exchange for
electronic vouchers, and subsequently sell the vouchers
via the internet. In one case involving over $540,000 in
fraudulent vouchers, our agents searched the subject’s
residence, and discovered numerous explosive devices,
loaded semi-automatic weapons, armor piercing
ammunition, cash, and illegal drugs. Our work in
this area has led to arrests, indictments, and in the
aforementioned case, a guilty plea.

Investigative work also led to a $466,500 settlement
related to a scheme in which several contractors
allegedly inflated invoices and engaged in bid rigging on
Amtrak construction projects. Additionally, our agents
pursued multiple cases of health care fraud in which
criminals bilked Amtrak’s insurance plans through false
claims, excessive and unnecessary tests, and prescribing
unnecessary and expensive drugs and medical
equipment (oftentimes without the patients’ knowledge).

Our auditors continued to generate impactful reports,
such as a report on security at Washington Union
Station and Ivy City maintenance facility. We found
that perimeter and interior security weaknesses, some
of them longstanding, put Amtrak employees and
passengers at risk. We also completed the third audit
in a series that examined staffing practices within the
company’s Mechanical department, where we found
it had not systematically managed its workforce at key
preventative maintenance facilities, which resulted in
unnecessary costs.

Finally, we welcome our new Deputy Inspector
General, Mary L. Kendall, who brings a wealth of
experience to our team. In the next six months, we
will continue to focus our efforts on high-impact areas
important to the company, the Board of Directors,
Congress, and the public. We trust that you will find
this report informative.

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