Hyundai Oilbank Co., S-Oil Corporation, et al — Government Contract Fraud/Bid-Rigging ($363 million)
, Eric R. Havian
A team of our whistleblower attorneys led the representation of an anonymous whistleblower who provided extensive assistance to the U.S. government in its criminal and civil cases against several Korean oil and transportation companies, for their roles in a conspiracy to artificially inflate prices on fuel contracts for U.S. military bases in South Korea. Ultimately, five different entities paid a total of $363 million in the largest False Claims Act antitrust recovery as well as the largest False Claims Act settlement involving bid-rigging to date. In November 2018, SK Energy Co. Ltd., GS Caltex Corporation, and Hanjin Transportation Co. Ltd. collectively agreed to pay $154 million, to resolve civil claims, and an additional $82 million in criminal fines for their involvement in the conspiracy the whistleblower exposed. And in March 2019, the Department of Justice announced that two additional companies, Hyundai Oilbank Co. Ltd and S-Oil Corporation, would pay $75 million in criminal fines and $52 million to resolve these same False Claims Act and antitrust violations. The whistleblower received an award of nearly $37 million, representing 23% of the False Claims Act payments. Read more here, here, and here.