Army of 15.5

The party and hangover have long been gone, but the bill is now due on Wacker Drive.
According to Lewis Lazare:

Leo Burnett agreed on Tuesday to pay the United States a whopping $15.5 million to settle a federal “whistleblower” civil lawsuit first filed under seal some 4½ years ago in U.S. District Court in Chicago.
The lawsuit alleged the ad agency submitted false billing claims to the U.S. Army for work performed on the lucrative Army ad account, which Burnett handled from 2000 through 2005. According to terms of the settlement, Burnett will make a cash payment to the U.S. government of $12.1 million and additionally credit the Army for $3.4 million in work the agency said it performed for — but did not bill to — the Army.

The agency admits no wrongdoing in the case. But that’s just people talking. Paying out $15.5 mil. says more than any combination of words ever will.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. And the Army will use the $15.5 million to purchase a new latrine for the troops.

  2. That will be installed by Halliburton/KBR, then not work, and be burned and rebuilt for another $15.5 mil.