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DOJ Enforcement Actions

The Department of Justice is the principal federal agency authorized to enforce the laws and defend the interests of the United States. As such, it oversees the enforcement of the False Claims Act, the foundation of the American whistleblower system, as well as numerous other laws.

The agency traces its origins to the Judiciary Act of 1789 which created the Office of the Attorney General, and the 1870 Act to Establish the Department of Justice, which established the agency as “an executive department of the government of the United States” with the Attorney General as its head.

The agency is comprised of numerous divisions with the Civil Division and in some instances, the Criminal Division, overseeing investigations and prosecutions under the False Claims Act. The U.S. Attorneys Office of the federal district where the False Claims Act case is filed also plays a key role in False Claims Act enforcement.

Below are summaries of recent DOJ settlements or successful resolutions under the False Claims Act as well as other successful prosecutions for fraud and misconduct. If you believe you have information about fraud which could give  rise to a claim for a whistleblower reward, please contact us to speak with one of our experienced whistleblower attorneys.

May 13, 2022

Hensel Phelps Construction Company has agreed to pay $2.8 million to resolve allegations of violating the False Claims Act in connection with a federal subcontract designated for service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses (SDVOSB).  Under a 2011 contract with the General Services Administration to construct a building in Washington, D.C., Hensel Phelps was required to set aside subcontracts for SDVOSBs and other small businesses.  According to qui tam plaintiff Fox Unlimited Enterprises, LLP, the company instead made arrangements with another large business to provide equipment and installation services, and used a SDVOSB in name only.  USAO NDNY, USAO EDWA

May 9, 2022

Prism Behavioral Solutions has agreed to pay $650,000 to resolve allegations of violating the federal and California False Claims Acts by billing California’s Medicaid program for services not provided to autistic children and young adults.  The whistleblower in this case, Diana Mason, is a behavioral analyst employed by Prism, and will receive a $170,000 share of the settlement.  USAO SDCA; CA AG

May 5, 2022

Robert Narvett will spend 15 years in prison for wire fraud and money laundering. Narvett, of Appleton, WI, defrauded nearly 70 different victims of over $2 million, in the end ruining credit scores, rendering victims unable to afford basic life necessities, and having to return to the workforce after retiring. USAO EDWI

May 5, 2022

Kohl’s and Walmart will pay $5.5 million in penalties for alleged violations of the Textile Fiber Products Identification Act, Textile Rules, and FTC Act for deceptively advertising rayon products as being made of bamboo, for falsely attesting to their environmentally-friendly qualities. They engaged in this behavior despite being warned by the FTC in 2010 that advertising rayon products as bamboo products violated the Textile Rules and FTC Act. DOJ

May 5, 2022

SHC Home Health Services of Florida, LLC, a/k/a Signature HomeNow paid $2.1 million for False Claims Act violations. Between 2013 and 2017, Signature HomeNow submitted false Medicare claims for home health services to patients who either were not homebound, did not require certain skilled care, did not have a valid or appropriate plan of care in place, and/or didn’t have the requisite face-to-face encounters for appropriate certification. USAO WDKY; USAO SDFL

May 4, 2022

Brenda Smith, former investment manager for Broad Reach Capital LP, pleaded guilty to seven counts of securities fraud. She will pay $47.2 million in restitution, spend 109 months in prison, and spend another 3 years thereafter under supervised release, for orchestrating a $100 million securities fraud scheme. To further her fraud, Smith provided investors with false monthly account statements, made false representations about her personal investment in the company, satisfied redemption requests by diverting other investors’ funds to pay the redemption amounts, and transferred clients’ funds to investments that were outside the scope of the promised investment strategy. NJ USAO

April 29, 2022

KCF Technologies, Inc., will pay the United States $1,226,436.14 for False Claims Act violations. KCF engaged in procurement fraud by billing labor time spent on commercial contracts improperly to DOD contracts it had with the Department of the Navy and the Department of the Army between 2016 and 2019. MDPA

April 29, 2022

Eargo Inc., which sells direct-to-consumer hearing aid devices to customers nationwide, has agreed to pay $34.37 million to resolve allegations of defrauding the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) over a four-year period.  Eargo allegedly submitted or caused to be submitted claims that contained unsupported diagnosis codes, even though an internal review of its billing and coding practices should have detected the error.  DOJ

April 28, 2022

Donald Woo Lee, a California-based doctor who recruited Medicare beneficiaries to his clinics, falsely diagnosed them and provided them with medically unnecessary procedures, and then submitted upcoded bills for those procedures to Medicare, has been sentenced to nearly 8 years in prison after being found guilty of seven counts of healthcare fraud.  In addition to submitting approximately $12 million in false claims to Medicare, for which he received $4.5 million in reimbursement, Lee also repackaged and reused single-use catheters on his patients.  DOJ

April 27, 2022

The owner and operator of two Texas-based adult day care centers has been sentenced to 5 years in prison and ordered to pay $1.8 million in restitution after she was found to have billed the Texas Medicaid Program for items and services not provided.  Scherry Lynn Moses ran Scherry’s Adult Day Activity Center and New Creation Residential Care Homes, a room and board for Social Security recipients, but inconsistently provided boarders with basic needs.  USAO WDTX
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