Five hundred million dollars was reportedly stolen from Iraq’s Ministry of Defense sometime before the 2005 Iraq elections according to CBS’s 60 Minutes. The investigation involves the apprehension of an audio tape in which Ziad Cattan, the chief operator of military spending at the time off the incident, is heard discussing payoffs to Iraqi officials, specifically a top political advisor close to Cattan. In the tape, Cattan specifies 45 million dollars in payoffs to an unnamed political advisor also alluded to in the recordings as being linked to the President and Prime Minister of the Iraqi Interim Government. Ziad Cattan has reportedly denied these allegations, admitting that it is his voice on the recordings yet claiming the content of the translations is inaccurate. Other findings suggest several other high ranking officials of the interim government might also be guilty of pinching funds striclty alloted for the Ministry of Defence. Governement officials from the U.S. have said this was Iraqi money lost and therefore; is an Iraqi problem.

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