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Crypto projects are toying with public funds. The False Claims Act will be a powerful tool in holding them to account

Posted  09/21/22
cryptocurrency and stocks
Last month, the Fairfax County Retirement System shared that they will be putting $70 million of their $6.8 billion fund into two crypto yield farming funds. In other words, pension money that allows teachers, firefighters, and police officers to retire will be invested into volatile digital tokens known as yield-farming projects. Yield-farming projects offer yields that are significantly higher than those...

Top Ten State Fraud Recoveries of 2021

Posted  01/21/22
government building stairs
State enforcement of anti-fraud laws is an important deterrent and tool to create accountability.  In cases of healthcare fraud and financial fraud, including government contract fraud, unlawful kickbacks, and tax evasion, state governments act as critical enforcement authorities, including through state False Claims Acts. Whistleblowers with information about fraud that violates state laws, or involves state...

Top Ten Tax Recoveries for 2021

Posted  01/19/22
Currency Zoomed In
Our top tax recoveries for 2021 total over $7 billion, an impressive number that is due largely to just one of our top ten tax recoveries. Tax evaders were creative last year, utilizing offshore banking, good old tax fraud, and forum shopping for an accounting opinion that fits—all with the intention of cheating the IRS and, in return, the taxpaying public. IRS Criminal Investigation flexed its muscles and went...

Top Ten Whistleblower Awards of 2021

Posted  01/6/22
Red Whistle with People
2021 was another banner year for whistleblowers, who once again collectively recovered billions of dollars for the government and hundreds of millions of dollars in whistleblower rewards under the various government whistleblower programs.  This includes awards under the qui tam provisions of the federal False Claims Act and various state False Claims Act programs.  It includes awards under the Dodd-Frank SEC...

Catch of the Week: Private Equity Firm and Former Executives of a Mental Health Center Reach $25 Million Medicaid Settlement

Posted  10/15/21
dollar bill with Medicaid text ripped through
In recent years there has been a proliferation of private equity firms taking oversight of healthcare entities. These private equity firms have increased their exposure to False Claims Act liability by playing active roles in the operation of healthcare entities, and multiple settlements have been reached over the last two years (on kickbacks and promotion of unapproved use of drug-device systems on pediatric...

Shining a Light on Fraud in the Energy Industry

Posted  10/1/21
This week brought not one but two newly announced False Claims Act (FCA) settlements with companies in the energy sector: (1) Oklahoma-based energy company Devon Energy Coporation settled claims it underpaid royalties for natural resources, and (2) National Grid, a utility company in New York settled claims it falsified reports to a local power authority to cover up mismanagement and wasted State electricity. The two...

What Maryland can Learn from the IRS on the State’s New Tax Program: Ari Yampolsky and Michael Ronickher in the Washington Post

Posted  07/13/21
Headshots of whistleblower attorneys Michael Ronickher and Ari Yampolsky
Opening with the warning “tax cheats beware,” Constantine Cannon whistleblower attorneys Ari Yampolsky and Michael Ronickher published an opinion piece in the Washington Post detailing the provisions of Maryland’s new tax whistleblower reward program, which covers state and county tax fraud and underpayments. While New York has long allowed whistleblowers to use its state False Claims Act to bring tax claims,...

POGO Reveals Possible “Unholy Alliance” Between ADS, Inc. and the Pentagon

Posted  02/26/21
Business sign saying "Come In We're Open" in white on blue background
As small businesses throughout the United States struggle to survive the economic devastation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, one company claiming to be a small business but with hundreds of employees and more than $3 billion in annual sales, as well as a long history of fraud allegations and settlements, continues to reap huge rewards from government contracts.  The company—Atlantic Diving Supply, Inc. (ADS)—is...

A Better Approach for Encouraging Would-Be Whistleblowers to Stand Up and Be Heard

Posted  02/17/21
Book text showing definition of Whistleblower
There is a clear recognition these days that whistleblowers play a critical role in rooting out fraud and misconduct.  That is why Congress has passed an ever-increasing array of legislation aimed at protecting and rewarding whistleblowers. There is the False Claims Act, which rewards and protects whistleblowers who report fraud against the federal government.  A majority of states have passed analogous state...

Top Ten Tax Recoveries of 2020

Posted  02/5/21
us cash with "taxes" sign on top
Tax fraud and tax evasion, unfortunately, continued apace last year.  Yet even in the face of waning tax resources, enforcement authorities chalked up some key wins in 2020. Criminal recoveries tend to dominate the headlines because many of the biggest tax recoveries are not public: the IRS scrupulously protects taxpayer privacy, and no announcements are made for civil tax recoveries.  Thus only those that result...
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