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Halliburton/KBR Accused of Rape Cover-Up
Lawsuit Filed Over Gang Rape of Female Employee in Iraq Two Years Ago
12/11/2007 11:25 AM ET
Not only have contractors working in Iraq so far successfully escaped prosecution for the killing of unarmed civilians, but a civil case recently filed in federal court indicates a group from Halliburton/KBR have avoided being charged for gang raping an American woman who was their co-worker.

ABC News reports Jamie Leigh Jones, now 22, says that after she was raped by multiple men at a KBR camp in the Green Zone, the company put her under guard in a shipping container with a bed and warned her that if she left Iraq for medical treatment, she'd be out of a job.

"Don't plan on working back in Iraq. There won't be a position here, and there won't be a position in Houston," Jones says she was told.

In her lawsuit against Halliburton and its then-subsidiary KBR, Jones says guards posted outside the container would not let her leave, holding her without food or water for 24 hours. One sympathetic guard loaned her a cell phone, which she used to call her father in Texas, who called US Rep. Ted Poe, (R-TX), who called the State Department, who sent people to secure Jones' release from her own employer.

"It felt like prison," says Jones, who told her story to ABC News as part of an upcoming "20/20" investigation. "I was upset; I was curled up in a ball on the bed; I just could not believe what had happened."

According to her lawsuit, Jones was raped by "several attackers who first drugged her, then repeatedly raped and injured her, both physically and emotionally."

Jones told that Army doctors confirmed she had been raped "both vaginally and anally," but the rape kit somehow vanished after being handed over to KBR security officers.

The rape occurred over two years ago--the Justice Department filed no charges and ABC couldn't actually confirm any federal agency was investigating the case.

Facing the daunting prospect that her employer was successfully covering up the incident in collusion with the federal government, Jones has now filed civil proceedings. However, she still faces the challenge of taking on the legal team working for the contracting giant, which has moved to have her case heard by a private arbitrator, instead of a judge and jury.

KBR says Jones' contract requires arbitration for the resolution of any problems, which conveniently prevents the proceedings from being reported publicly. KBR has also successfully won over 80% of the arbitration proceedings brought against it.


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