May 18, 2017

Whistleblower News From The Inside — May 18, 2017

By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team

Russia Investigation Gets Special Counsel – The Justice Department appointed Robert S. Mueller III, a former F.B.I. director, as special counsel on Wednesday to oversee the investigation into ties between President Trump’s campaign and Russian officials, dramatically raising the legal and political stakes in an affair that has threatened to engulf Mr. Trump’s four-month-old presidency.

The decision by the deputy attorney general, Rod J. Rosenstein, came after a cascade of damaging developments for Mr. Trump in recent days, including his abrupt dismissal of the F.B.I. director, James B. Comey, and the subsequent disclosure that Mr. Trump asked Mr. Comey to drop the investigation of his former national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn. NYT

Sanofi Wins False Claims Case Appealed by Rival Drugmaker – Generic drugmaker Amphastar Pharmaceuticals has failed in its attempt to revive a False Claims Act lawsuit against Sanofi over the misrepresentation of drug patent information ( Amphastar Pharm. Inc. v. Aventis Pharma S.A. , 2017 BL 157523, 9th Cir., No. 15-56122, 5/11/17 ). The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit May 11 affirmed the dismissal of Amphastar’s FCA lawsuit based on the public disclosure of the misrepresentation allegations in an earlier patent infringement lawsuit brought by Sanofi’s subsidiary, Aventis Pharmaceuticals, against Amphastar. Aventis alleged that Amphastar’s generic version of Aventis’s blood-thinner infringed its patent. The patent was invalidated after Amphastar discovered during litigation that the patent was based on a misrepresentation by Aventis to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and Food and Drug Administration. BNA

Chelsea Manning, Who Gave Trove of U.S. Secrets to WikiLeaks, Leaves Prison – Chelsea Manning, the transgender Army private who passed a trove of sensitive government documents to WikiLeaks in 2010, walked out of the disciplinary barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., on Wednesday morning after serving an abbreviated sentence in connection with one of the most notorious leaks of classified documents in U.S. history. Manning’s 35-year sentence was commuted by President Barack Obama, who concluded that seven years in federal custody was enough for her crimes. She now heads to Maryland, according to supporters who set up an online fundraising site that collected more than $150,000 for housing and other essentials as she re-enters society. Washington Post

CVS’s Omnicare to Pay $8 Million to Settle U.S. Probe – CVS Health Corp’s Omnicare unit has agreed to pay $8 million to resolve claims that its prescription verification system resulted in false claims being submitted to government healthcare programs. The settlement, announced on Tuesday by Acting U.S. Attorney William Fitzpatrick in New Jersey, resolves claims by the federal government and 28 states arising out of a whistleblower lawsuit filed under the False Claims Act. The deal resolved civil claims arising from what the U.S. government said was Omnicare’s submission of false claims for payment for drugs under the Medicare Part D and Medicaid programs from 2008 to 2014. The government said Omnicare, in order to increase profits, designed an automated label verification system that resulted in the submission of claims for generic drugs different from those dispensed to patients. New Hampshire Union Leader

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