An investigative arm of the Pentagon has sent an Army Corps of Engineers whistle-blower's allegations of wrongdoing against Halliburton Co. to the Justice Department.
Bunnatine H. Greenhouse was removed from her position as the Corps of Engineers' top procurement official in August after raising concerns over the volume of Iraq-related work given to the Houston-based oil-services giant without competition. She is appealing.
Kellogg, Brown & Root, a Halliburton subsidiary, had a competitively awarded contract to provide logistics support for the military in the Middle East and was awarded a no-bid contract to repair Iraq oil fields.
The Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the criminal investigative arm of the Pentagon inspector general, investigated her charges and "has shared its findings" with the Justice Department, John R. Crane, assistant inspector general, said in a letter to Sen. Byron L. Dorgan (D-N.D.). "The DOJ is in the process of considering whether to pursue the matter," the letter said.
"This is the first evidence that someone is taking seriously these allegations," said Dorgan, chairman of the Democratic Policy Committee, which heard Greenhouse in June.
Two former Halliburton workers have been charged with taking kickbacks while working for the company in the Middle East. And Pentagon auditors have questioned more than $1 billion in costs for the company's work there.
"The company continues to cooperate fully with the Justice Department's investigation of certain issues pertaining to our work in Iraq," Halliburton said in a written statement. "As the investigation is ongoing, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time."