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Consumer Fraud 1414 articles

Whistleblower Suit Against Abbott, AbbVie Recovers $25 Million For U.S. Taxpayers

Abbott Laboratories and AbbVie Inc. have agreed to pay more than $25 million to settle a long-standing whistleblower lawsuit claiming the drug companies illegally promoted the triglyceride drug TriCor for off-label purposes and provided doctors and other prescribers with unlawful kickbacks to boost sales. Amy Bergman, a former Abbott sales representative, filed the lawsuit under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act in 2009. The U.S. Department of Justice declined to intervene in the case, but it moved ahead without the government’s direct involvement, surviving attempts by Abbott and AbbVie to have the case thrown out. According to the ... Read More

Whistleblowers Say United Airlines Retaliated For Calling Out Listeria Problems

United Airlines systematically failed to fix food safety problems at its Newark Liberty International Airport facilities, exposing passengers to dangerous Listeria contamination, three former high-level United food-service managers claim in separate lawsuits. The whistleblowers also claim that efforts to warn United about food-safety violations and their refusal to participate in unlawful practices resulted in retaliation. United Airlines’ Newark catering operation – the largest of its five in-house food service operations – supplies 45,000 meals a day for domestic and foreign flights. The lawsuits were filed by Eliot Mosby, General Manager of United Airlines’ Newark Catering facility; Marcia Lee, former Senior ... Read More

U.S. Intervenes in Three Whistleblower Cases Against Navy Contractor

U.S. authorities have intervened in three whistleblower cases filed against Tetra Tech EC Inc. alleging that the engineering and consulting firm submitted false claims to the U.S. government in connection with its role in testing for radiation at Hunters Point Naval Shipyard in San Francisco. According to the U.S. Justice Department, the U.S. Navy awarded contracts to Tetra Tech to test parcels of land at the shipyard for radiation and to remediate any areas where the company found the radiation levels to be excessive. The three whistleblower lawsuits alleged that Tetra Tech misrepresented the source of soil samples it submitted ... Read More

Facebook Gets Maximum UK Penalty for Cambridge Analytica Data Breach

U.K. authorities have hit Facebook with the highest possible punishment for its Cambridge Analytica data breach, ordering the social media empire to pay £500,000 ($645,000). The U.K.’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the country’s privacy watchdog, said Facebook is responsible for “serious breaches of data protection” that allowed the personal data of more than 87 million Facebook users to fall into the hands of Cambridge Analytica, a data harvester with links to former Trump adviser Steve Bannon and other right-wing extremists. “A company of its size and expertise should have known better and it should have done better,” said information commissioner ... Read More

Whistleblowers Help U.S. Recover $3.8 Million From Vascular Care Company

Two whistleblowers who alleged that a Philadelphia-based vascular health company and several of its subsidiaries were cheating Medicare and engaging in illegal kickback schemes have helped the U.S. recover more than $3.8 million. The whistleblowers filed separate lawsuits alleging Vascular Access Centers LP and 23 of its subsidiary companies violated the federal False Claims Act and Anti-Kickback Statute, both of which are intended to protect U.S. taxpayer money from being squandered and misspent. The U.S. Department of Justice investigated the whistleblowers’ claims and chose to intervene, thereby taking over their litigation. ‘ According to the Justice Department, Vascular Access Centers ... Read More

Whistleblower Case Accusing Bayer of Baycol Fraud Moves Forward

A longstanding whistleblower lawsuit alleging Bayer AG cheated the U.S. Department of Defense by fraudulently representing its cholesterol drug Baycol as safe and effective will move forward after previously being dismissed. U.S. District Judge Michael J. Davis in Minnesota, who dismissed the case in 2015, found on Oct. 16 that whistleblower Laurie Simpson had presented sufficient proof that she had direct and original knowledge of the health risks associated with Baycol and Bayer’s downplaying of those risks. The Eighth Circuit sent the whistleblower lawsuit back to Judge Davis after finding on appeal that Ms. Simpson’s allegations satisfied the “who, what, ... Read More

Montana’s Kalispell Hospital Network Settles Whistleblower Lawsuit for $24 million

Kalispell Regional Healthcare System of Kalispell, Montana and six affiliates have agreed to pay $24 million to settle allegations stemming from a whistleblower lawsuit that they engaged in an extensive kickback scheme. The government alleged that Kalispell Regional maintained arrangements with referring physicians that violated the Stark Law, the Anti-Kickback Statute, and the federal False Claims Act. U.S. law prohibits hospitals and other health care providers from engaging in kickback arrangements and other schemes that provide money or other gifts for patient referrals. Services billed to Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health care programs that were influenced by illegal kickbacks ... Read More

Defense Contractor Pays $7.8 Million To Resolve Fraud Allegations

A defense contractor has agreed to pay $7.8 million to settle allegations with the U.S. government that it illegally exploited military contracts set aside for small businesses. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Georgia said that Arena Event Services Inc., which does business as Arena Americas, coordinated with Military Training Solutions LLC (MTS) to obtain the small business contracts. Congress mandates that a certain amount of government contracts go to small businesses as a way to encourage small business growth. These contracts prohibit the small business from being affiliated with a non-small business, while also limiting the ... Read More

AmerisourceBergen Pays U.S. $625 Million, Resolving Illegal Drug Repackaging Scheme

AmerisourceBergen Corp. and four subsidiary companies will pay $625 million to settle allegations that they ran a profiteering scheme that involved buying sterile vials of drugs from manufacturers, breaking them open, pooling the contents, and then repackaging them into pre-filled syringes. AmerisourceBergen, a drug wholesaler that ranks number 11 on the Fortune 500 list, provided the illegally repackaged drugs to physicians treating cancer patients, the U.S. Department of Justice said in its announcement of the settlement. Federal prosecutors alleged that AmerisourceBergen profited by skimming drug overfill from the FDA-approved sterile vials and repacking them into pre-filled syringes. They said the ... Read More

DaVita’s HealthCare Partners Pays $270 Million to Settle Medicare Fraud Allegations

HealthCare Partners Holdings, a unit of DaVita Medical Holdings, has agreed to pay $270 million to settle allegations stemming partly from a whistleblower lawsuit alleging the companies caused Medicare to overpay on insurance claims submitted by Medicare Advantage plan providers. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, HealthCare Partners, an independent physicians association based in California, contracted with insurance companies to provide medical services to Medicare Advantage patients. Unlike traditional Medicare, which pays health providers for patient services they provide to beneficiaries, Medicare Advantage Plans are paid a fixed, monthly amount to provide health care to Medicare recipients who enroll ... Read More