By MICHAEL MELIA, Associated Press

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ The U.S. Navy has reassigned three female submarine officers as the military investigates allegations they were involved in financial misconduct before reporting to their vessels, a spokeswoman said Friday.

The investigation into alleged travel claim fraud, which also involves other personnel not assigned to submarines, is led by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, according to Navy Cmdr. Monica Rousselow, a spokeswoman for the submarine force.

The officers are among the first women assigned to U.S. submarines in a high-profile initiative for the Navy, which reversed a ban on women serving aboard the cramped vessels in 2010. The initial class of 24 female submarines officers completed training at sites including Groton, Conn., last year before joining the undersea force in recent months.

“The alleged actions under investigation involve financial misconduct and in no way involved their performance while assigned to their current operational units,” Rousselow said in a statement.

“Overall the integration of women onboard submarines continues to progress smoothly and the reassignment of the three Supply Corps officers will have minimal impact on the integration process.”
The women are being temporarily reassigned to a submarine group at a Navy base in Kings Bay, Ga.

Rousselow, who is based in Norfolk, Va., said the investigation began in February, but she could not say where or provide further details of the alleged fraud.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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