A U.S. military task force has discovered that part of a $2.16 billion transportation contract was diverted through a murky network of subcontractors and into the hands of a group of Afghan power-brokers, criminals and Taliban insurgents, according to a source with knowledge of the investigation.
Roughly $600 million of the contract had been spent before authorities were alerted to the scandal, the source said, citing an internal report.
Only part of that money, however, is believed to have been diverted to "nefarious elements," the source added.
A Pentagon official told CNN the full $2.16 billion contract covered the movement and transportation of 70% of the material needed for U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
The Obama administration announced a new strategy Monday to combat transnational crime organizations, spurred by information indicating the groups have grown and expanded their operations in recent years.
President Barack Obama already took one step Sunday by signing an executive order designed to block assets and property that are under U.S. jurisdiction and belong to organizations the administration considers a threat to U.S. interests.
Compiled by Tim Lister
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