On Wednesday, former Navy SEAL and current Representative Ryan Zinke (R-MT) testified in front of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. Rep. Zinke criticized the Department of Defense Office of Inspector General’s (DoD IG) Military Whistleblower Reprisal Investigations of RDML Brian Losey. The IG investigated an alleged reprisal of a subordinate that complained to the IG’s office while RDML Losey was the Commander of Special Operations Command Africa in 2011.

The former head of the Navy’s SEAL Team 6, Losey’s career was derailed by allegations that he was obsessed with loyalty and retaliated against subordinates who complained anonymously to the IG about his travel expenses and the “toxic” work environment he cultivated.

Losey was head of Special Operations Command Africa in 2011 when he was accused of giving poor reviews and transferring out key staffers who filed anonymous complaints with the IG’s office.  – Military Times

Rep. Zinke defended his fellow SEAL, believes that the IG investigation was mishandled from the very beginning and that RDML Losey was trying to hold his subordinate accountable.

Below is Rep Ryan Zinke’s testimony:

Good Afternoon, Chairman DeSantis, Ranking Member Lynch, and distinguished members of the Subcommittee on National Security, I would like to thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today on the important issue of the Department of Defense Office of Inspector General’s (DoD IG) Military Whistleblower Reprisal Investigations.

In my testimony today I would like to focus my attention on the DoD IG investigations of Rear Admiral (RDML) Brian Losey during his time as Commander of Special Operations Command Africa. Beginning with an anonymous complaint in 2011, the DoD IG held five separate investigations into accusations of reprisal against RDML Losey, which has taken more than four years to complete.

One of these investigations involved the alleged reprisal against a suspected whistleblower under his command. During this investigation, the office of DoD IG seemed to display a blatant mishandling and misrepresentation of evidence in both their preliminary and final report.

Following numerous witnessed accounts of misconduct by the Complainant from RDML Losey and others, the Security Officer for Special Operations Command Africa ordered a Command Directed Investigation (CDI) into the Complainant’s actions. During the preliminary report, the DoD IG blatantly misrepresented the CDI by stating that “… the IO [Investigating Officer] completed the CDI and determined that all 10 allegations were not substantiated as alleged;” A statement that was eventually proven to be completely false. The CDI found that three allegations were substantiated, and 2 of the allegations were partially substantiated. Additionally, the CDI recommended that the Complainant should be issued a negative referral on an Officer Performance Report and administrative discipline. Acting on the recommendations, RDML Losey relieved the Complainant of his position and reassigned him to a different position in a different geographical combatant command that he believed to be commensurate of his rank.