Oil brokers sex scandal may affect drilling debate
The two-year, $5.3 million investigation by Interior's inspector general found workers at the Minerals Management Service's royalty collection office in Denver partying, having sex, using drugs and accepting gifts and ski trips and golf outings from energy company representatives with whom they did government business.
The investigations exposed "a culture of ethical failure" and an agency rife with conflicts of interest, Inspector General Earl E. Devaney said.
Between 2002 and 2006, 19 oil marketers — nearly a third of the Denver office staff — received gifts and gratuities from oil and gas companies, including Chevron Corp., Shell, Hess Corp. and Denver-based Gary-Williams Energy Corp., the investigators found.
"Employees frequently consumed alcohol at industry functions, had used cocaine and marijuana, and had sexual relationships with oil and natural gas company representatives" who referred to some of the government workers as the "MMS Chicks."