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New Mexico 102 articles

Cucumbers Linked To 27-State Salmonella Outbreak

A multi-state outbreak of Salmonella linked to American-style or “slicer” cucumbers grown in Mexico has sickened hundreds of people in 27 states, federal health authorities said Friday. At least one person has died after becoming infected. Investigators said that the contaminated cucumbers were supplied by Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce of San Diego and grown in Baja, Mexico. The outbreak has not been linked to domestically grown cucumbers. As of Sept. 3, nearly 300 people have been infected and 53 have been hospitalized with Salmonella poisoning linked the cucumbers. The states with the highest number of infections are Arizona (60 ... Read More

Blue Bell ice cream is back on the market in select stores

After nearly five months since the initial Blue Bell recall production stop, Blue Bell Creameries has now reopened distribution of its ice cream to select stores in Alabama and Texas. According to the USA Today, there will be five phases to reenter the market in 15 different states considering the only Blue Bell ice cream being produced is in Sylacauga, Ala. The first phase include distributing Blue Bell ice cream to stores in Montgomery and Birmingham, Ala., as well as well stores in Houston, Austin and Breham, Texas. The Blue Bell recall began in April when at least 10 people ... Read More

Nuclear Weapon Contractor Settles False Claims Act Case Alleging Misuse Of Funds

The U.S. government has recovered nearly $5 million from a corporation hired to operate Sandia National Laboratories, the largest national research laboratory in the U.S. charged mainly with overseeing the development and manufacture of non-nuclear components of nuclear weapons. According to the U.S. Justice Department, Sandia Corporation, a privately owned company contracted by the federal government to run Sandia National Laboratories, agreed to pay $4.79 million to resolve allegations that it illegally used taxpayer money to lobby for an extension of its $2.4-billion-per-year management contract – a violation of the False Claims Act and the Byrd Amendment. Sandia Corporation is ... Read More

New Mexico Whistleblower Lawsuit Recovers $5.9 Million for U.S. Nuclear Agency

A San Diego technology vendor that provided computers to the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) through another seller has agreed to pay the U.S. $5.9 million to settle allegations that it fraudulently inflated the price of the computers for profit. Maverick Granger, a former Technology Integration Group executive in Albuquerque, N.M., made the allegations in a whistleblower lawsuit he filed against his employer under the False Claims Act. According to Mr. Granger’s complaint, San Diego-based Technology Integration Group (also known as PC Specialists Inc.) sold Dell computers to Sandia Corporation from 2003 to 2013. Sandia Corporation, a contractor of the ... Read More

The Fraud List: Community Health Systems typifies fraud targeting government health care programs

The Fraud List

Community Health Systems Inc. is the largest for-profit operator of general acute-care hospitals in the United States, with more than 200 hospitals in a network that spans 29 states. On its website, the Franklin, Ten.-based corporation says its hospitals “are dedicated to providing quality healthcare for local residents and contribute to the economic development of their communities.” But as The Fraud List demonstrates, some of the nation’s biggest corporations can also be some of its biggest fraudsters. Earlier this year, Community Health Systems Services and three New Mexico hospitals in its network agreed to pay the U.S. government $75 million ... Read More

Animas River Wastewater Spill Three Times Larger Than Original Estimates

A toxic wastewater spill that has turned the Animas River in three states a mustard yellow color and is disrupting life in several Southwestern communities is now estimated to be three time larger than originally reported. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said Sunday that three million gallons of wastewater from the old Gold King Mine, located a few miles southeast of Telluride, Colo., in San Juan County, were released from a debris dam that had formed inside the mine. EPA cleanup crews who were working at the shuttered mine breached the dam with heavy machinery Wednesday morning, causing the release ... Read More

Toxic wastewater Spill Turns Colorado River Bright Orange

A million-gallon spill of toxic wastewater flowed from an old mine into the Animas River in Southern Colorado Wednesday, turning the waterway into a thick sludgy vivid orange and yellow and threatening human health and wildlife for miles. The release occurred when Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) workers were using heavy machinery to assess pollutants at the Gold King Mine, about 55 miles north of Durango, Colo. The mine is the property of San Juan Corp. of Golden, Colo., but it has been inactive for several years. The EPA has been monitoring the site for years without incident, but an apparent ... Read More

Red light camera fraud scheme implicates dozens of municipalities, officials

An alleged red light camera enforcement bribery scheme exposed by a whistleblower last year that encompassed several municipalities in more than a dozen states keeps growing larger. Aaron Rosenberg, once the top national salesman for Chicago-based Redflex Traffic Systems, alleged in his federal lawsuit that the company doled out hefty bribes and showered government officials with gifts in “dozens of municipalities” in exchange for lucrative contracts. Mr. Rosenberg says he was fired in 2013 in retaliation for providing information about the alleged scandals to federal and local officials investigating Reflex for alleged misconduct. The whistleblower then filed a civil defamation ... Read More

The Fraud List: Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) 

The Fraud List

When the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) needed technical and consulting services in considering a rule involving the handling and reprocessing of low-grade radioactive waste, it turned to Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) – a Reston, Va.-based firm that provides scientific and engineering services to government agencies and commercial enterprises. Given the implications of the rule for the health of the general public, the NRC required whatever contractor it chose to be free of conflicts of interest that could lead to biased decisions. NRC regulators were considering a rule that would have permitted the release or recycling of certain materials ... Read More

Laughing gas may ease fear of IUD insertion

Giving women laughing gas during insertion of an intrauterine device (IUD) increases their satisfaction with the procedure, a new study has found. IUDs, such as the popular Mirena IUD, are highly effective forms of birth control, but the insertion of the small device into the cervix can be painful. The procedure is generally performed in a doctor’s office with no sedation. Some women are offered or advised to take over-the-counter painkillers. But many opt to try other forms of contraception simply based on the fear of the pain they may experience. With this in mind, researchers with the University of New ... Read More