In United States ex rel. Barko v. Halliburton Co., No. 05-CV-1276 (D.D.C. Mar. 6, 2014) and United States ex rel. Barko, No. 05-CV-1276 (D.D.C. Mar. 11, 2014) (denying motion for leave to file interlocutory appeal from the March 6, 2014 decision), the court held that an internal investigation into alleged breaches of the company’s Code of Business Conduct (COBC) was not privileged, but was instead a business exercise conducted pursuant to Department of Defense regulations that require contractors to have internal controls in place to facilitate timely discovery and disclosure of improper conduct.  This matter, as described in the two opinions, presents a number of circumstances that distinguish it from other opinions addressing the privileged nature of investigatory materials.  First, although a lawyer apparently commissioned the investigation in response to a hotline tip, the investigation was conducted entirely by non-lawyers who prepared a final written report, which according to the court did not indicate that the report was prepared for a legal purpose.  Second, witnesses interviewed by the non-lawyers were not given Upjohn warnings or informed that the purpose of the interview was to assist the company in obtaining legal advice.  Third, the court’s in camera review of the privileged documents revealed that “neither the [company’s recently filed] motion for summary judgment nor the statement of undisputed material facts fairly reflect the evidence produced or the findings of [the company’s] own internal investigation.”  In rejecting defendant’s motion for leave to file an interlocutory appeal, the court explained that, even if the investigation had been privileged, that privilege was waived by defendant’s putting the report at issue by suggesting that, because no report of wrongdoing was made to the government, the report must have concluded that there were no “reasonable grounds to believe” that there had been violations of the law.