In a recent op-ed in the Houston Chronicle, Constantine Cannon Partner Mary Inman explained why President Trump’s proposed border wall project could be a prime target for unscrupulous actors looking to defraud the United States Government. Ms. Inman called on lawmakers to condition any funding on increased oversight of how the monies are spent and encouraged the government to empower whistleblowers:
The United States has not seen a public works project of the wall’s scale since the Panama Canal. Such a singular project will require singular vigilance to ensure public funds are not misspent. Whistleblowers, empowered by federal, state and local false claims acts, can be the government’s eyes and ears. With $18 billion in spending earmarked for 716 miles of border wall, whistleblower watchdogs could be the government’s first line of defense against fraud.
The False Claims Act allows private citizens, known as relators, to bring a lawsuit on the government’s behalf, rewarding them with a significant portion of the government’s recovery (between 15% and 30%).
What do you think? Are you concerned about fraudsters and the border wall project?
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