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Government Procurement Fraud

This archive displays posts tagged as relevant to fraud in government contracting and procurement. You may also be interested in the following pages:

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Whistleblower Goes it Alone and Wins Big in Guardrail Case

Posted  10/23/14
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team A federal jury in Texas this past Monday came down hard against highway guardrail maker Trinity Industries in a whistleblower action brought by one of Trinity's competitors, a guardrail installer named Joshua Harman.  He claimed Trinity cut corners on its guardrails, did not come clean with the government, and ultimately put millions of motorists at serious risk.  The jury...

DOJ Catch of the Week – RE/MAX

Posted  07/11/14
By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team This week's Department of Justice "catch of the week" goes to RE/MAX Allegiance Relocation Services.  On Tuesday, the Virginia-based move management company agreed to pay roughly half a million dollars to resolve allegations it violated the False Claims Act by overbilling the government for transportation services.  The settlement was the result of a coordinated effort by the...

March 7, 2014

Ocean shipping companies Sea Star Line and Horizon Lines agreed to pay $1.9M and $1.5M, respectively, to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act by fixing the price of government cargo transportation contracts between the continental US and Puerto Rico, the Department of Justice announced today.  The allegations were first raised in a qui tam lawsuit filed by former Sea Star Line executive William B. Stallings under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act.  He will receive a whistleblower award of $512,719.  DOJ

JM Eagle — Government Contracting Fraud/Noncompliance with Industry Standards ($22.5 million).

Two of our whistleblower attorneys led the representation of whistleblower John Hendrix, a former engineer at JM Eagle, as well as dozens of public agencies, in a two-month jury trial in Los Angeles against JM Eagle, the largest PVC pipe maker in the world. The jury returned a 50-page verdict finding that, over a ten-year period, JM Eagle had falsely represented its compliance with industry standards related to long term strength and durability of its PVC pipe. The pipe is buried deep underground in hundreds of municipalities around the nation. The damages phase of the case has not yet been held. However, a co-defendant in the case, Formosa Plastics, paid $22.5 million to settle its own potential liability, and Mr. Hendrix received a whistleblower reward from that settlement. See NY Times and Corporate Crime Reporter for more.

August 6, 2013

Larry Lehmann has agreed to pay $400,000 to settle allegations that he violated the False Claims Act in connection with the Federal Communications Commission’s E-rate Program. The E-rate Program subsidizes eligible equipment and services to make Internet access and internal networking more affordable for public schools and libraries. The allegations were first raised in a qui tam lawsuit filed under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act. DOJ

False Claims Act Enforcement of Procurement Fraud, Special Considerations for Contractors

Posted  04/29/10
CC Attorney Mary Inman
Mary Inman was Presenter at the CLE International: False Claims Act Qui Tam Litigation

Tyco — Government Contracting Fraud/Noncompliance with Industry Standards ($60 million).

One of our whistleblower attorneys led the representation of Nora Armenta and dozens of California municipalities in a qui tam action under the False Claims Act against Tyco International, Mueller Co., and the James Jones Company, alleging they sold waterworks parts to municipal water systems that were made with 40% more lead than allowed by industry standards. According to her complaint, Ms. Armenta repeatedly warned her superiors that the parts were for drinking water, but was ignored. The defendants settled the case, but only after 13 years of litigation, including three successful appeals that reversed unfavorable trial rulings. The defrauded municipalities received $60 million, and Ms. Armenta received a whistleblower reward of $15 million.

LA Dep’t. of Water & Power — Government Contract Fraud/Utility Overcharges ($224 million).

Four of our whistleblower attorneys led the representation of whistleblower Sam Barakat, as well as the County of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Unified School District, and other government agencies in a whistleblower action against the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. The plaintiffs alleged that the DWP had overcharged these schools and other public agencies for electric power over a ten-year period of time. The case involved a ground-breaking legal theory that had never been tested in court. It also involved dissecting elaborate cost accounting to demonstrate government customers had been overcharged relative to the true cost of service. Following a two-month trial, a verdict was returned against the DWP for $224 million. See LA Times, UT San Diego, and National Law Journal for more.

NEC — Government Contracting/Bribes and Kickbacks ($5 million).

One of our whistleblower attorneys was hired by the San Francisco Unified School District to pursue a False Claims Act case against NEC Business Network Solutions, a large supplier of computer systems under the government’s “E-Rate” program. E-Rate provided government subsidies for the purchase of computer equipment for school classrooms, seeking to bridge the “digital divide.” According to the complaint, NEC paid bribes and kickbacks to school officials, causing them to order excess equipment purchased with federal funds. One of the recipients of the illegal bribes was convicted and sentenced to 21 months in prison. Using a novel theory, the San Francisco school district “blew the whistle” on the company, and received an award of $5 million. See NY Times for more.
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