Northrop Grumman Looking Into Report of White Supremacist Worker

(Bloomberg) -- Defense contractor Northrop Grumman Corp. said it will investigate the “very serious issues” raised by a news report identifying an employee with alleged ties to a white supremacist group.

The weapons maker was “recently made aware of alleged employee actions that are counter to our values,” according to a statement Thursday that didn’t identify the employee or source of information. The comment came hours after news organizations ProPublica and Frontline reported that a member of an extremist group had government security clearance through his work for Northrop as a systems engineer.

“We do not tolerate hatred or illegal conduct and we condemn racist activities in any shape or form,” the Falls Church, Virginia-based company said. Northrop is “taking immediate action to look into” the issues raised by the report.

The employee, who is also a doctoral student at the University of California at Los Angeles, could be seen striking a black protester in a video shot at a 2017 rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, ProPublica and Frontline said. The employee received security clearance from the U.S. government to work in a computer modeling and simulation group for Northrop’s aerospace unit, according to the report.

The story brings unwanted attention weeks after the company closed its blockbuster $7.8 billion acquisition of Orbital ATK Inc. Northrop, one of the largest U.S. defense contractors, is known for the Global Hawk drone and was picked in 2015 to build the next U.S. stealth bomber.

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