Last Updated: December 15, 2011
Kellogg Brown & Root, a subsidiary of Halliburton, won a not to exceed $7 billion, sole-source contract to provide services to Iraq. Vice President Cheney was Halliburton’s CEO from 1995 to 2000 and questions arose about his involvement in how KBR could receive such a significant contract without going through the competitive bid process.In April 2003, using the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) Judicial Watch sought information regarding how contracts relating to the Iraq War and Iraqi’s oil fields were being awarded.The Department of the Army stonewalled the request, referring it through several areas of the DOA without actually producing any documents.Then in September 2003 it invoked FOIA exemption 1 – National Security as support to not produce any documents. On February 25, 2004, Judicial Watch was given no alternative but to file a lawsuit.Through its request and lawsuit, Judicial Watch obtained an e-mail that shows possible involvement of Cheney in the awarding of the contract. The March 5, 2003 e-mail says that a Pentagon official arranged for the contract for Kellogg Brown & Root “contingent on informing” the White House. It said “We anticipate no issue; since action has been coordinated w VP’s office.” View the E-mail.Judicial Watch has also obtained and released an Army memo dated February 28, 2003 entitled “Justification and Approval for Other than Full and Open Competition for the Execution of the Contingency Support Plan.”During the week of September 9, 2004, Reuters reported that the Department of the Army would rescind its contract to Kellogg Brown & Root and open the work to competitive bid. Judicial Watch continues to seek additional documents in this matter.Case StatusDepartment of the Army agreed to pay Judicial Watch $24,000 in attorney’s fees and costs as part of a settlement agreement. The fees are intended to compensate Judicial Watch for its attorney time and expense in challenging the Army’s improper withholding of records pertaining to the contract in violation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
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