Military audit questions $108 million of Halliburton bill Bernard Hibbitts at 7:34 PM ET
[JURIST] Defense contractor Halliburton Inc. [corporate website] may have overcharged the federal government by more than $100 million, according to an audit [PDF text] conducted by the Defense Contract Audit Agency [official website] and released Monday by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) [House profile], which questioned $108 million in costs charged by Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root (KBR) [corporate overview] for delivering fuel to civilians in Iraq. The audit also charges that Halliburton failed to negotiate the best prices possible with subcontractors. The alleged misconduct took place under a no-bid contract awarded to Halliburton prior to the US-led invasion of Iraq. Halliburton has defended its practices, claiming that the audit failed to consider that the fuel delivery was part of an urgent mission within a war environment. Halliburton, run by Vice-President Dick Cheney until his decision to become President Bushs running mate in the 2000 election, is the largest US contractor in Iraq and is said to have the potential for $18 billion in earnings through its wartime operations and its role during the rebuilding of Iraq.. Waxman and Rep. John Dingell (D-Mich.) [House profile] have co-authored a letter to President Bush [PDF text] regarding the audit, demanding that steps be taken to recover funds from Halliburton, and criticizing his administration for allegedly ignoring dozens of attempts to review the audits of contracts with KBR. Reuters has more.
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