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criminal 188 articles

Whistleblowers to get cut of record fines in health care fraud case

Drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline will pay a combined total of $3 billion in civil and criminal fines and plead guilty to pushing two of its popular drugs for unapproved purposes and withholding important safety information about a third drug from U.S. regulators. A group of whistleblowers instrumental to the case, which is considered to be the largest health care fraud settlement in U.S. history, will receive a percentage of the fines for their role in aiding the federal government’s investigation and helping to recover taxpayer money. At the center of the case was GSK’s illegal marketing of the drug Paxil to treat ... Read More

Arrested BP engineer says secret evidence will clear him of charges

An engineer who was the first person to be arrested on charges related to BP’s 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill for deleting a series of text messages has asked the court to allow him to share undisclosed records that, he claims, will exonerate him of any wrongdoing. Kurt Mix, 50, worked as a drilling and completions engineer for BP when the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded and sank about 50 miles south of the Louisiana coast, killing 11 workers and setting off the largest oil spill in U.S. history. He is accused of deleting hundreds of text messages exchanged between ... Read More

Abbott to pay $1.5 billion for illegally promoting Depakote, thanks to whistleblower lawsuits

Abbott Laboratories has pleaded guilty and agreed to pay $1.5 billion to resolve criminal and civil charges for fraudulently promoting its anti-seizure drug Depakote for a number of unapproved, off-label purposes. The near-record payout, the second largest by a drug company according to the U.S. Justice Department, also resolves four whistleblower lawsuits brought against Abbott Laboratories under the False Claims Act, which allows private citizens to sue on behalf of the United States and share a percentage of funds recovered. Deputy U.S. Attorney General James M. Cole said Monday’s settlement “shows further evidence of our deep commitment to public health ... Read More

Feds make first arrest in connection to BP oil spill

Federal authorities have made the first arrest in connection with BP’s 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. Kurt Mix, 50, of Katy, Texas, was arrested Tuesday night on two counts of obstruction of justice for allegedly trying to destroy evidence relating to the size of the disaster and BP’s efforts to stop the blown-out Macondo well. Mr. Mix worked as a drilling and completions engineer for BP when the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded and sank in the waters about 50 miles south of the Louisiana coast, killing 11 workers and setting off the largest oil spill in U.S. history. He ... Read More

DePuy bribed Greek authorities for sales rights and contracts

An international division of DePuy Orthodpaedics Inc. has agreed to pay $7.9 million (£4.8 million) plus prosecution costs to settle a U.K. probe of illegal activities the company allegedly conducted in Greece. The investigation, led by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), found that DePuy International Ltd., based in Leeds, U.K., engaged in “unlawful conduct relating to the sale of orthopaedic products in Greece between 1998 and 2006.” DePuy International Ltd. is a division of DePuy Orthopaedics, Inc. of Warsaw, Indiana, which is owned by parent company Johnson & Johnson. The SFO investigation probed allegations that DePuy executives bribed officials in ... Read More

BP managers could face manslaughter charges for Deepwater Horizon deaths

BP managers responsible for decisions governing the Deepwater Horizon platform’s operations may face manslaughter charges for the deaths of 11 workers who were killed when the rig exploded last April 20, according to a Bloomberg report. The federal investigation also stretches to the top of BP’s hierarchy as it seeks to determine whether former BP CEO Tony Hayward withheld information, stonewalled investigators, or made statements contrary to his knowledge in his testimony before Congress during hearings last year. Investigators are currently focusing on the events leading up to the fatal explosion as BP and Transocean workers were trying to seal ... Read More

Imprisoned man close to new hearing for fatal sudden acceleration crash

A new hearing is scheduled for August 2 to determine whether Koua Fong Lee will receive a new trial. Lee, a 32-year-old Hmong immigrant and Minnesota resident, was thrown in prison after his 1996 Toyota Camry crashed in 2006 killing three people. On June 10, 2006, Lee was traveling along Interstate 94 in St. Paul on his way home from church. In the car with him were his expectant wife, 4-year-old daughter, brother and father. Just before exiting, Lee’s Camry accelerated drastically to speeds of 70-90 miles per hour, ultimately colliding with other cars. The crash killed Javis Trice Adams, ... Read More

Bill to hold auto execs responsible for deceptive business practices

A powerful new consumer protection bill is making its way through the U.S. Congress, thanks mainly to Toyota and the sudden acceleration defect that causes so many of its model cars and trucks to speed out of control. If the bill becomes law, it would hold auto executives personally accountable for misleading federal safety regulators with imprisonment and millions of dollars in civil fines. Legislators on the Senate Commerce Committee, led by West Virginia Democrat John D. Rockefeller, say that the top executives of auto manufacturing corporations need to be held responsible when they knowingly withhold information or deceive regulators in ... Read More