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Morse Diesel blamed for courthouse flood, damage

Thursday, September 15, 2011 | 1:20 p.m. CDT

ST. LOUIS — A contractor fired at the federal courthouse in St. Louis a decade ago is blamed for installing a misaligned pipe that broke and flooded many floors.

But the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that a General Services Administration official said there is no way to seek reimbursement from the contractor, Morse Diesel.

The pipe break in August spewed up to 8,000 gallons of water at the Thomas F. Eagleton U.S. Courthouse. Damage could reach millions of dollars in costs.

Morse Diesel pleaded guilty in 2000 to a criminal charge and paid a $500,000 fine for submitting a false claim for reimbursement to the GSA. The government eventually recovered $19 million from the Morse parent company over allegations of fraud, false claims and kickbacks regarding the courthouse and three other GSA contracts.


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