Defense contractor KBR has filed a lawsuit against Jamie Leigh Jones, a former employee who sued the company in 2007 after allegedly being drugged and raped by a group of co-workers in Iraq.
The lawsuit seeks more than $2 million to cover their legal fees, and accuses her of making fabricated and frivolous claims, according to the Wall Street Journal.
A Houston jury deliberated for more than 10 hours before deciding there was not enough evidence against the defendants.
“They have beaten us and now they are attempting to crush us,” her lawyer, Todd Kelly, told the Wall Street Journal. “This is an attempt by KBR to chill other people from bringing claims against them.”
Jones had filed suit against KBR, its former parent company Halliburton, and former co-workers. All parties involved denied the allegations and the co-workers insisted the sex had been consensual.
She acknowledged that she had no memory of the alleged rapes but claimed it was because she had been drugged prior to the assault. Jones said the company imprisoned her in a shipping container after she reported the rape.
She had promoted her own case on her website and had asked for $145 million from KBR for allegedly failing to enforce its sexual harassment policies and not telling her of the danger of rape when she signed her employment contract.
Jones had sued the defendants for negligence, negligent undertaking, sexual harassment and hostile environment under Title VII of the Civil rights Act of 1964, breach of contract, fraud in the inducement to enter the employment contract, fraud in the inducement to agree to arbitration, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and false imprisonment.
KBR had attempted to keep the case from going to a jury trial, because Jones’ contract required arbitration in the case of workplace disputes, but the conservative Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that she had the right to sue in court.
The Crime Victims Office at the Department of Justice was unable to investigate the incident because of a lack of jurisdiction over private contractors in Iraq.
Eric W. Dolan
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