September 16, 2008
The Denver Post reports that the 10th Circuit has reversed a lower court dismissal of a $7.6 million jury verdict against Kerr-McGee. The suit, brought by a former Minerals Management Service auditor, alleged that Kerr-McGee underpaid the government on royalties for federal offshore oil leases.
The ruling was announced on the same day that federal investigators alleged that some employees of the federal Minerals Management Service improperly accepted gifts and engaged in sexual relationships with oil-and-gas industry representatives. The investigation was prompted in part by revelations made in a handful of lawsuits, including the auditor’s False Claims Act suit.