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Major Victory for Los Alamos Whistleblowers

Los Alamos whistleblowers Chuck Montano and Tommy Hook scored a major victory in their struggle to have the University of California repay the United States government millions of dollars in charges. The Department of Energy Inspector General issued a report, released publicly July 10, 2006, which corroborated their findings that UC, the DOE contractor which operates Los Alamos National Laboratory, had charged millions of dollars in unallowable costs and failed to deal with a breakdown in internal controls. The IG Report found that the problems were significant, and directed the DOE to require UC to demonstrate why these costs should not be repaid.

The Bernabei Law Firm along with Bob Rothstein of the New Mexico law firm of Rothstein, Donatelli, Hughes, Dahlstrom, Schoenburg & Bienvenu, LLP is representing Mr. Montano and Mr. Hook in a federal lawsuit against UC and UC officials, which charges that they have had their careers destroyed, and suffered severe emotional distress, in retaliation for their audit findings over the last 15 years, in violation of the First Amendment and the California Whistleblower Act. UC has filed eight motions claiming that its officials are immune from suit. Those motions are currently pending before the court.

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