GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - When something goes wrong at the Palisades nuclear facility, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission does a technical review. Now, a team of nuclear cops is investigating the nuke plant in Covert Township.
Many of the people in the NRCs Office of Investigations are former agents of the FBI, Secret Service, Drug Enforcement Agency or have backgrounds with other law enforcement agencies. They're not looking for things that have just gone wrong.
Their job is to look for deliberate wrongdoing, things that could result in criminal prosecution.
In the 2011 annual report from the NRC, the agents investigated 227 cases and turned 77 over to the Justice Department. It's unclear how many actually ended up in prosecution, although officials said it's rare.
These nuclear cops have been at Palisades before. Agents probed the case of an angry control room operator who stalked off the job last year without turning it over to someone else.
That case was sent to federal prosecutors, and 24 Hour News 8 learned they declined to prosecute.
This week, the nuclear cops began looking into the year-long leak from an emergency water tank that shut down Palisades on June 12. NRC inspectors at the plant knew about the slow leak since May 2011, and their spokesman said it wasn't them who turned the case over for special investigation.
The Office of Investigations began the probe on its own this week, but a spokesman at their Chicago office said the agents are not saying why.
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