Tagged Articles

penalties 19 articles

Federal court holds Chinese drywall companies in contempt for ignoring U.S. litigation

China’s state-owned drywall manufacturers have abandoned litigation in the U.S. involving thousands of American homeowners who sued the companies over allegedly toxic and corrosive drywall they claim has damaged their homes and their health. In addition to not responding to the multidistrict litigation (MDL) in a Louisiana federal court, Taishan Gypsum Co. Ltd. and other gypsum manufacturers owned by the Chinese government’s Assets Supervision and Administration Commission ignored a $2.7 million default judgment against them in 2010. U.S. District Judge Eldon Fallon held Taishan in civil and criminal contempt on July 17 for its refusal to appear in court to ... Read More

BP trial judge issues scathing criticism of BP legal team

The federal judge overseeing Deepwater Horizon oil spill litigation in New Orleans said he was “deeply disappointed” in the behavior of BP’s legal team, condemning it for attempting to undermine his authority and undo the complex settlement agreement with plaintiffs that it helped design. Judge Carl Barbier issued the unusually striking order Nov. 22 in response to an “emergency motion” the oil giant filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. In that motion, BP accuses the judge of refusing to suspend hundreds of millions of dollars in settlement payments it believes are being sent to claimants ... Read More

Lawsuit seeks to cease illegal production, marketing of products from drug company

The Justice Department has filed a lawsuit against a Louisiana pharmaceutical company to stop the sale of drugs that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) says are labeled incorrectly and have not received federal clearance to be marketed in the United States. Sage Pharmaceuticals, based in Shreveport, has been making and selling prescription painkillers and over-the-counter cold medicines and wound cleansers without FDA approval. The agency says it has been repeatedly warning the company to stop illegally making and distributing the products. In 2000, the government filed an injunction against Sage Pharmaceuticals, to prevent the company from selling two unapproved ... Read More

Alabama leaders express high hopes for BP oil spill fine money

President Obama signed the RESTORE Act into law Friday, a measure that will channel billions of dollars in BP oil spill fine money away from federal coffers, sending it instead directly to the Gulf Coast states to aid in environmental and economic recovery. Senators Mary Landrieu (D-Louisiana) and Richard Shelby (R-Alabama) introduced the RESTORE Act in July 2011 in an effort to ensure most of the fines collected under the Clean Water Act would be invested on the Gulf Coast. Under federal law, such fines collected by the government are normally deposited in a general fund used for the cleanup ... Read More

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

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

Internal emails indicate BP hid early oil-spill rate estimates

Emails and other documents obtained under Freedom of Information Act lawsuits or turned over as part of court proceedings ahead of the February 27 BP oil spill trial suggest politics and spin had more influence on determining the amount of oil BP’s blown-out Macondo well spewed into the Gulf of Mexico each day than actual science. According to the Associated Press, internal BP emails and memos submitted in the court proceedings show that on the day the Deepwater Horizon sank into the Gulf of Mexico, BP officials warned that oil could gush out of the runaway well at a rate ... Read More

Federal regulators charge BP with another set of safety violations

Federal regulators have cited BP with another round of violations in connection with the Deepwater Horizon explosion, the workers killed in the incident, and the massive oil spill that erupted from the Macondo well a mile below the surface. Each safety violation the government cites BP for entails a civil penalty that the oil giant will have to pay should the charges stick. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), which replaced the corrupted Minerals Management Service after the Gulf oil spill, cited BP for five noncompliance violations Wednesday. The citations included four for failing to suspend drilling procedures ... Read More

Grocery chain incurs steep fines for multiple workplace hazards

When an employee of a grocery store in Rindge, New Hampshire, fell 11 feet to a concrete floor from a storage platform, sustaining broken bones and head trauma, instead of calling for help, store managers lifted the injured worker off the floor, put him in a wheel chair, and pushed him to the store’s receiving dock to wait for a relative to take him to the hospital. That unusually harsh disregard of federal safety standards prompted an investigation of DeMoulas Supermarkets Inc. (doing business as Market Basket) by a regional office of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), whereupon ... Read More

Huntsville, Alabama, Sears faces steep fines for safety violations

HUNTSVILLE, ALA. – The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has cited a Huntsville department store for a number of safety violations the agency says endangered store employees. A recent OSHA inspection of Sears, Roebuck and Co. turned up seven violations that altogether brought the company $128,000 in proposed penalties. Three repeat violations accounted for most of the proposed fines. Those violations involved exits blocked by retail materials and equipment, failing to repair damaged racks that caused merchandise to become unstable in various storage areas, and failing to post signs along exit routes. The three repeat violations accounted for $110,000 ... Read More