Robert Wingfield and Bill Ma agreed to pay $385,000 and $50,000, respectively, to resolve allegations they violated the False Claims Act by engaging in a scheme to evade customs duties on imports of aluminum extrusions from China. Wingfield was the US sales representative for Tai Shan Golden Gain Aluminum Products Ltd., the Chinese company that exported the aluminum extrusions in this case. According to the government, Wingfield conspired with domestic importers to submit false information to the government to evade duties, and Ma later formed a company, Northeastern Aluminum Corp., to act as the importer of record for the goods in an attempt to shield the real importers from liability. The allegations originated in a whistleblower lawsuit filed by James F. Valenti Jr. under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act. Valenti will receive a whistleblower award of approximately $79,000. DOJ
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