Irresponsible Behavior by U.S. Government Contractor in Kabul Results in Whistleblower Lawsuit
Dec 19, 2012
Cleveland, OH (Law Firm Newswire) December 18, 2012 – The company cited in this whistleblower lawsuit may have endangered the Kabul mission and the lives of military personnel.
“This case is a real eye-opener,” related Christopher Mellino, a Cleveland whistleblower lawyer. “It involves a company, Jorge Scientific, allegedly endangering the lives of military personnel in the Kabul theatre of war.” This whistleblower lawsuit, also referred to as a qui tam lawsuit, is being filed by two former employees of the company – a long-term defense and intelligence contractor to the federal government. The suit includes videos of the actions witnessed at the Legacy Contract project in Kabul, and outlined in detail in the statement of claim.
Evidently, due to the nature of the allegations, and based on the visual evidence obtained from the relators, the U.S. Army has launched a criminal investigation. The plaintiffs are seeking lost wages and damages. However, that is not all they hope to achieve with this lawsuit. “They are hoping to send a clear message to every U.S. government contractor that irresponsible behavior may not only jeopardize American lives, but cost the taxpayers of this nation an enormous amount of money,” explained Mellino.
The Legacy contract, awarded to Jorge Scientific, was intended to help local governments in Kabul and Qandahar provide their own security. It is alleged that the executive vice president of the company acted egregiously and actively encouraged outrageous misconduct at the facility where the team was stationed. The two relators filed a whistleblower lawsuit stating the executive’s actions abhorrently compromised the U.S. mission, putting the lives of Jorge workers, coalition personnel and government employees in serious jeopardy.
Further information in the statement of claim suggests Jorge executives violated company rules of conduct on a daily basis. Examples included the allegations of indiscriminately firing weapons, possessing legally prohibited grenades, and throwing live ammunition into bonfires during drunken parties. All complaints from the local residents were apparently ignored, which set the facility up as a potential target for the Taliban and Al Qaeda. It is further alleged that taxpayer’s money paid for the hot shot bullet parties and other actions of an equally questionable nature, including chauffeuring women to the facility for intimate liaisons.
Videos submitted as evidence show Jorge employees three sheets to the wind and wrestling during work hours, and it was not just alcohol that played a role in the debacle the relators witnessed. Oxycodone was part of the lifestyle and when mixed with booze, caused one executive to put a loaded gun in the mouth of an Islamic company employee and call him his “nigga.”
“The evidence is damning, and there is more outlined in the court documents. It includes how the realtors faced retaliation from the company for not participating in the ongoing shenanigans, and how they were ultimately forced into being discharged from their jobs. It is difficult to imagine that the plaintiffs would not be successful in their suit. Not all qui tam lawsuits happen to be this clear cut. Many are highly complex and take a long time to get to court. You will always need an experienced attorney for cases like this, as the government will not even consider joining the suit, without the presence of a lawyer,” said Mellino.
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