The Pentagon is expected to take legal action against some companies and individuals, including former assistant U.S. Navy secretary Melvyn Paisley, as part of a defense industry contract fraud probe, The New York Times reported Tuesday.

Planned actions, expected to come as early as Tuesday, include steps that would prevent Paisley - who left the Navy in 1987 to become a consultant - from doing any work under his current contracts with the government.Pentagon contract rules allow the Defense Department to block an individual from completing contractual obligations while being investigated for criminal activity.

The Pentagon probe has centered on whether some individuals and companies took advantage of confidential relationships with defense industry insiders to obtain information to help them bid for Pentagon contracts.

Legal actions to bar other individuals from fulfilling government contracts also are expected to come this week, the Times said, quoting unnamed Defense Department officials.

Individuals the Pentagon may take action against include William Galvin, a consultant currently under contract with the Pentagon, the sources said.