Los Angeles-based upscale furniture seller Z Gallerie LLC agreed to pay $15 million to resolve allegations it violated the False Claims Act through a scheme to evade customs duties on imports of wooden bedroom furniture from China. According to the government, Z Gallerie evaded antidumping duties by misclassifying, or conspiring with others to misclassify, the imported furniture as pieces intended for non-bedroom use. The allegations originated in a whistleblower lawsuit filed under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act by Kelly Wells, an e-commerce retailer of furniture. She will receive a whistleblower award of $2.4 million from the proceeds of the government’s recovery. DOJ
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