Industry News: Volume 5, Number 2

John Noveske Killed in Car Crash
Oregon State Police (OSP) Sergeant Tyler Lee reports that on January 4, 2013 at approximately 9:13 p.m., a 1984 Toyota Land Cruiser driven by John Noveske, age 36, from Grants Pass, was westbound on Highway 260 near El Camino Way.  As the vehicle negotiated a right curve, it traveled across the oncoming lane onto the dirt highway shoulder until it struck two large boulders.  The vehicle rolled and Mr. Noveske was ejected.  Noveske, who is the owner of a local rifle manufacturing company, was not using safety restraints and was pronounced deceased at the scene.

Noveske Rifleworks posted this message on their Facebook page after the announcement: “Noveske Rifleworks would ask you to remember the passing of our founder, John Noveske, who died Friday, January 4th 2013 in an automobile accident.  John planned for all eventualities, and wanted to ensure any changes would be as seamless as possible for our customers, dealers, suppliers, employees and friends.  While this will be a trying time, we do not expect a change in the day to day operations of Noveske Rifleworks.  We would like to thank you for your support as we deal with our loss, and would ask that instead of flowers, you consider a donation to a cause we will announce at later date.  No arrangements were available at press time.

Warne Manufacturing Under New Ownership
Warne Scope Mounts is under new ownership.  Noted for developing and manufacturing premium scope mounting systems since beginning operations in 1990, Warne Scope Mounts was purchased by Daniel Goetz and Salt Creek Capital II LLC in January of 2013.  Mr. Goetz states, “I am very excited about the opportunity to lead Warne through the next phase of growth in this rapidly expanding company by focusing on enhanced customer service, internal process improvement and innovative rapid product development.”  Mr. Goetz brings over 30 years of lean manufacturing experience and demonstrated leadership to profitably build organizations.  Charlie Lake and Dave Wilcox will remain available to provide strategic guidance to Warne as they continue to develop other products within the firearms industry.

Meprolight Introduce New Thermal and Enhanced Weapon Sight Systems at SHOT 2013
Meprolight, a leading manufacturer of electro-optic systems for armed forces, law enforcement agencies, and civilian markets – presented its expanded portfolio at the SHOT Show, January 15-18 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  In addition to the introduction of the new NOA NYX 3X, the company’s enhanced NOA XT4 thermal sight, the Mepro 4X, and the Mepro M5 Red-Dot electro-optical sight also made their first appearances at the SHOT Show.

A new member of the NOA NYX family, the NOA NYX 3X Un-cooled Thermal Weapon Sight with X 2.7 magnification, sustains the recoil of 5.56, 7.62 and .338 caliber rifles.  Less than 2.2 pounds in weight, the sight is designed to meet the highest Mil-Spec requirements.  With this new addition, Meprolight offers four distinct sights with different magnifications of 2X, 3X, and 7X for a variety of operational and tactical needs.

The NOA XT4 is a compact and lightweight dual-use Thermal Weapon/Surveillance clip-on.  It is designed for armed forces and law enforcement special forces – providing easy thermal clip-on for mounting in-line with a combat 4x day scope or used as a handheld surveillance device.

The Mepro 4X is a compact and lightweight (1.7 lbs) combat 4x scope.  Utilizing a quick release Picatinny adaptor, this Mil-Std sight provides five different brightness settings.  The sight operates with a single standard battery and is equipped with a unique energy saver feature for extended operation.

DoubleTap Defense Files Lawsuit Against Heizer Defense and Others
On January 3, 2013, DoubleTap Defense, LLC, owner of the DoubleTap Tactical Pocket Pistol, filed a six million dollar lawsuit against Heizer Defense, LLC of St. Louis, Missouri, and others.  In the lawsuit, DoubleTap Defense is seeking, in addition to monetary damages, an injunction to stop any further action on the part of Heizer Defense, LLC and others to manufacture or market a product based on the intellectual property of DoubleTap inventor Ray Kohout.

In the fall of 2012, DoubleTap Defense, LLC’s relationship with the Heizers was terminated due, in part, to Heizer’s alleged inability to fulfill its manufacturing obligations.  DoubleTap Defense, LLC has since engaged Azimuth Technologies, LLC, a Naples, Florida based company, to manufacture its new and improved DoubleTap Tactical Pocket Pistol.

United States Sues Virginia-based Contractor Triple Canopy
The United States has filed a complaint against a Virginia-based contractor alleging that the company submitted false claims for unqualified security guards under a contract to provide security in Iraq, the Justice Department announced today. The company, Triple Canopy, Inc., is headquartered in Reston, Va.

In June 2009, the Joint Contracting Command in Iraq/Afghanistan (JCC-I/A) awarded Triple Canopy a one-year, $10 million contract to perform a variety of security services at Al Asad Airbase – the second largest air base in Iraq.  The multi-national JCC-I/A was established by U.S. Central Command in November 2004, to provide contracting support related to the government’s relief and reconstruction efforts in Iraq.

The government’s complaint alleges that Triple Canopy knowingly billed the United States for hundreds of foreign nationals it hired as security guards who could not meet firearms proficiency tests established by the Army and required under the contract.  The tests ensure that security guards hired to protect U.S. and allied personnel are capable of firing their AK-47 assault rifles and other weapons safely and accurately.  The government also alleges that Triple Canopy’s managers in Iraq falsified test scorecards as a cover-up to induce the government to pay for the unqualified guards, and that Triple Canopy continued to bill the government even after high-level officials at the company’s headquarters had been alerted to the misconduct.  The complaint further alleges that Triple Canopy used the false qualification records in an attempt to persuade the JCC-I/A to award the company a second year of security work at the Al Asad Airbase.

“For a government contractor to knowingly provide deficient security services, as is alleged in this case, is unthinkable, especially in war time,” said Stuart F. Delery, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division of the Department of Justice.  “The department will do everything it can to ensure that contractors comply with critical contract requirements and that contractors who don’t comply aren’t permitted to profit at the expense of our men and women in uniform and the taxpayers at home who support them.”

“We will not tolerate government contractors anywhere in the world who seek to defraud the United States through deliberate or reckless conduct that violates contractual requirements and risks the security of government personnel,” said Neil H. MacBride, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia.

The government’s claims are based on a whistleblower suit initially filed by a former employee of Triple Canopy in 2011.  The suit was filed under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provision of the False Claims Act, which allows private persons to file suit on behalf of the United States.  Under the act, the government has a period of time to investigate the allegations and decide whether to intervene in the action or to decline intervention and allow the whistleblower to go forward alone.