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May 30--Defense contractor Aerojet-General Corp. has lost a major appeal of a four-year-old court case, leaving it liable for as much as $1 billion to clean up contamination of water at and near its Rancho Cordova site.
The First District Court of Appeal ruled 3-0 to uphold a lower court verdict that Aerojet was not entitled to insurance coverage on those cleanup costs because it knowingly caused the pollution.
About 60 insurance companies sued Aerojet to keep from incurring those huge costs, claiming that the company knew or should have known that its method of disposing of chemicals used in testing rockets was inadequate.
"Evidence is overwhelming that …