Court Case Exposes Principal Role of DynCorp in Operating Ghost Air Rendition Flights

A lawsuit between two private contracting companies that transported detainees between the U.S., Guantanamo and secret black-hole overseas prisons has revealed major new details about the Government's secret rendition program under George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

The company is DynCorp, now known as Dyncorp Internatiobal.[More...]

DynCorp, which was reorganized and split up between another major contractor and a separate firm now known as DynCorp International, functioned as the primary contractor over the airlift. The company had not been previously linked to the secret flights.

—Airport invoices and other commercial records provide a new paper trail for the movements of some high-value terrorism suspects who vanished into the CIA "black site" prisons, along with government operatives who rushed to the scenes of their capture. ,,,The private business jets shuttled among as many as 10 landings over a single mission, costing the government as much as $300,000 per flight.

Where did they go? You name it.

Islamabad; Rome; Djibouti; Frankfurt, Germany; Dubai, United Arab Emirates; Shannon, Ireland; Glasgow, Scotland; Tenerife, Spain; Sharm el Sheik, Egypt; and even Tripoli....Kabul, Bangkok and Bucharest....Cairo; Damascus, Syria; Amman, Jordan; and Rabat, Morocco

What's so special about the information revealed in this lawsuit?

]F]ew court and corporate records have emerged describing the backstage role of private companies that aided in the secret flights. The international human rights group, Reprieve, which discovered the court case in New York, said the material provides "an unprecedented insight into the government's outsourcing of torture."

DynCorp was way bigger than Boeing subsidiary Jeppeson Dataplan, which was the subject of a years long court battle brought by the ACLU. The Obama Administration claimed the state secret privilege in that case, which ultimately was dismissed. The Obama Administration did not intervene in this suit.

DynCorp was purchased in 2003 by Computer Services Corp., another leading federal contractor, in a $940 million merger. CSC then took on a supervising role in the rendition flights through 2006, according to invoices and emails in the court files. CSC sold three DynCorp units in 2005 to Veritas Capital Fund, a private equity firm, for $850 million, but retained ownership of other parts of the old firm. Veritas in turn sold the restructured DynCorp — now known as DynCorp International — for about $1 billion in 2010 to Cerebrus Capital Management, another private equity fund.

While the detainees were shackled and blindfolded, the crew (and probably government officials) were treated far better:

The court files break down costs incurred for on-flight computers and phones, landing fees and even money spent for meals. A $440 catering bill from Ohio-based Air Chef for an October 2003 flight from Washington to Guantanamo showed the Gulfstream was well stocked as it headed south. It carried fruit platters, assorted muffins and bagels, deli sandwiches, potato chips, cookies and two $39 bottles of wine.

More news articles on this here, here and here.

< AP Publishes NYPD Documents of Spy Unit That Targeted Muslims | Wednesday Night Open Thread >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    And all of this came out over a billing dispute (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by ruffian on Wed Aug 31, 2011 at 09:56:16 PM EST
    among the subcontractors. All this money floating around and someone got too greedy. I guess that was the only way we were ever going to learn anything.

    i find it interesting (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by cpinva on Wed Aug 31, 2011 at 11:17:29 PM EST
    that in the suit brought by the ACLU, the obama admin. claimed "state secrets" and had it tossed, but in a suit between gov't contractors, over basically the same issue, not a peep out of the obama admin.

    the lesson to be drawn: "state secrets" as a defense, or means of getting a lawsuit that's potentially embarrassing to the gov't dropped only applies to irritating private citizens. apparently, those same "state secrets" aren't nearly as compelling, when it's contractors going at each other in court.

    be advised, as a private citizen, you are very, very low on the food chain, as far as this administration is concerned.

    Just for Clarification (none / 0) (#4)
    by The Maven on Thu Sep 01, 2011 at 09:36:23 AM EST
    The government intervention in the Jeppesen Dataplan case was under the Bush DOJ in the latter portion of 2007.  After winning dismissal pursuant to the state secrets doctrine in early 2008, it was still Bush's DOJ that opposed the appeal led by the ACLU.

    However, after the three-judge panel at the Ninth Circuit reversed the dismissal in April 2009, it was then the Obama DOJ that successfully petitioned for en banc review by the Ninth Circuit and then also opposed the plaintiffs' cert. petition to the Supreme Court this past spring.


    Can such things being revealed other ways make it (none / 0) (#3)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Sep 01, 2011 at 08:04:54 AM EST
    possible for the victims to eventually sue?

    I'm More Interested to Know if... (none / 0) (#5)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Sep 01, 2011 at 12:42:22 PM EST
     ...if this non-sense had stopped.  Seems like I just read that it hasn't, but it was only in passing, might have even been a comment here.

    Is it, nothing above mentions dates in the current administration ?

    What really upsets me, is there doesn't ever seem to be a lack of people willing to assist with this.  Pilots, doctors, members of the military, and the endless slew of people that have to know what is going on, yet crickets, it's takes something absurd, like corp fighting corp over dollars to get any sort information.

    Where is the outrage I feel, it just doesn't seem to exist anywhere, at any level, beyond me and my friends, and of course here. I can't help but feel sorrow for the people that didn't do anything, and even some for the ones that did, to be transported around the world like something not human to be tortured here, then there, wondering what horrible S lies at the next landing.  All while these fricken aholes are brunching on fruit salad laughing it about this and that.

    Anyone that can treat another human being like this is seriously sick.  I don't care if they are guilty, this C is medieval dungeon S that once was regarded as deplorable.  Now apparently it's necessary to keep us safe.