KBR, the country’s biggest military contractor, is trying to stick taxpayers with the bill for $85 million in damages to soldiers whom it exposed to a carcinogen in Iraq.
About 830 military personnel were in contact with sodium dichromate at a water treatment center in Qarmat Ali, The Huffington Post reports
. The substance containing the carcinogen was “just different-colored sand,” KBR contractors running the facility told the soldiers, calling it merely a mild irritant.
At least one cancer death resulted, and in November, KBR was found guilty of negligence for poisoning 12 soldiers. The jury determined that KBR knew about the chemical’s presence and its danger.
But KBR says the government should pay the damages, as well as its $15 million in legal fees because the company’s contract with the government includes an indemnity agreement relieving it of legal liability.
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