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Abu Ghraib Service Contractors Immune From Tort Claims

Sep.18.2009

In a 2-1 decision in Saleh v. Titan Corp. (D.C. Cir. Sept. 11, 2009), the D.C. Circuit has adopted the Boyle 'government contractor defense' to provide immunity from all state tort claims for certain service contractors. Extending the defense to military contractors providing services to the U.S. Government's prison in Abu Ghraib, Iraq, the court held, "During wartime, where a private service contractor is integrated into combatant activities over which the military retains command authority, a tort claim arising out of the contractor's engagement in such activities shall be preempted."

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Brian C. Elmer
Retired Partner – Washington, D.C.
Phone:
Email: belmer@crowellretiredpartners.com