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Virginia 331 articles

Company Contracted To Train Iraqi Police Committed Fraud, U.S. Alleges in False Claims Act Suit


The U.S. government has announced it has filed a False Claims Act lawsuit against DynCorp International, a firm contracted by the State Department to train police in Iraq. The government’s complaint alleges DynCorp knowingly allowed one of its main subcontractors to inflate the cost of a multitude of services billed to the government. The State Department’s Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs contracted DynCorp, a subsidiary of Delta Tucker Holdings Inc., in April 2004 to provide training for civilian police forces in Iraq as well as other services needed in support of the police training operations. The U.S. ... Read More

Whistleblower Lawsuit Alleges West Virginia Internet Provider Squandered U.S. Stimulus Funds


Allegations of gross misuse of federal stimulus grants for private profit are the basis of a whistleblower lawsuit filed by one West Virginia internet provider against another under the federal False Claims Act. Bridgeport, W. Va.-based provider Citynet is suing Frontier Communications, accusing the defendant of misusing $40.5 million it received in federal stimulus funds. Rather than building an open, high-speed broadband network for more than a thousand public facilities as it was supposed to do under the term of the grant, Frontier instead built a closed network connecting the public buildings to its existing fiber utility poles, Citynet claims. ... Read More

Passenger Carrier Service Shut Down After Deadly Fatigue-Related Crash


A father and son who have been operating as a commercial passenger transportation team have been ordered to cease all interstate and intrastate commercial driver after federal safety regulators declared them to be an “imminent hazard to public safety.” The federal order follows a June 18 crash that left six passengers dead. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Wenceslao Cruz Marquez and his son, Hugo Cruz operated a passenger carrier service although neither of the men possessed a commercial driver’s license. On the day of the accident, Mr. Cruz was driving a pickup truck loaded with passenger ... Read More

Whistleblower Suit Recovers $5.8 Million From Technology Companies That Falsely Procured Small Business Contracts


Five California-based information technology companies have agreed to pay the U.S. nearly $6 million to resolve a False Claims Act lawsuit accusing them of falsely representing the size of one of their companies to obtain government contracts reserved for small businesses. The complaint alleges the defendant companies, En Pointe Gov. Inc., En Pointe Technologies Inc., En Pointe Technologies Sales Inc., Dominguez East Holdings LLC and Din Global Corp.; falsely certified En Pointe Gov. Inc. as a small business from 2008 to 2015, even under-reporting quarterly sales figures to make it seem eligible for contracts the General Services Administration (GSA) available ... Read More

Jury Awards Plaintiff $5.1 Million in DuPont Water Contamination Case


An Ohio federal jury last week returned a harsh verdict against DuPont by awarding $5.1 million to a plaintiff who claims the company’s chemical dumping caused his cancer. The jury also found DuPont liable for actual malice, prompting the second bellwether trial to enter a punitive damages phase that could signal heavier damages on the horizon for the company. Plaintiff David Freeman, an Ohio college professor, claims that chemical manufacturer DuPont led in the production of ammonium perfluorooctanoate, known as PFOA, a chemical compound used in the production of Teflon, Stainmaster, and Gore-Tex fabric, and that the company dumped its ... Read More

New talc study among African American women finds even greater ovarian cancer risk

talc ovarian cancer

Reuters reported on a new talc study published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention this May that African American women who used talcum powder in the genital area had more than a 40 percent increased risk of ovarian cancer. In an email interview with Reuters Health, Dr. Nicolas Wentzensen, head of clinical epidemiology for the National Cancer Institute, affirmed the study, saying that the research was well-conducted. Reuters reported Wentzensen “noted that African-American women are underrepresented in many epidemiological studies.” The study included 1,329 African-American women, 584 diagnosed with ovarian cancer and 745 without the disease. Researchers interviewed them about their ... Read More

Women injured by Mirena IUD not swayed by exclusion of expert testimony

mirena IUD

Bayer Healthcare claims that women suing the company over injuries allegedly caused by its Mirena IUD cannot prove that the intrauterine device could puncture the uterine wall – even if properly inserted – since nearly all of their expert witnesses have been excluded. But the women argue they don’t need expert testimony to prove their case because Bayer has already admitted Mirena poses dangers to women. Bayer faces about 1,200 consolidated lawsuits alleging the pharmaceutical company failed to warn of Mirena side effects. The T-shpaed device is inserted into the cervix where it is designed to prevent pregnancy for up to ... Read More

Feds Order Tennessee Truck Driver Off The Road After Deadly Crash


Federal traffic safety regulators have ordered a Tennessee commercial truck driver to cease driving after an investigation of a fatal crash in Maine turned up multiple safety violations. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) deemed driver Randall Weddle an imminent hazard to public safety – a measure the agency takes when it believes a driver is too dangerous to allow behind the wheel of a large truck. The order for him to cease operating was issued on June 22. According to the FMCSA, Mr. Weddle was driving a tractor trailer for Tennessee-based R&E Logistics Inc. on March 18. While ... Read More

Virginia Bus Crash Kills One Chinese Tourist, Injures 15 others

bus crash, Virginia, shuttle bus - image by Tony Castrill, Fairfax County, courtesy WTOP news

Authorities continue to investigate the cause of a deadly shuttle bus crash in Virginia last week that left a Chinese tourist dead and 15 others injured, including three critically. The bus rolled over after leaving the roadway, trapping some passengers underneath and inside the bus. The crash occurred about 5 p.m. June 14 on the George Washington Parkway near the first President’s Mount Vernon estate. Investigators said the bus, which was hauling about 18 people including the driver, crashed head-on with another smaller vehicle. They have not said what specifically happened or who may have been at fault. Citing the ... Read More

More than 100 additional Suits Resolved in Transvaginal Mesh MDL


Law360 reports that Endo International plc unit American Medical Systems Inc. has settled approximately 135 more suits in the multidistrict litigation (MDL) in West Virginia against the seven manufacturers of transvaginal mesh implants. The seven MDLs have been consolidated into one giant litigation totaling around 70,000 pending cases. Last year AMS settled about 360 cases in April, another 108 in May and another 100 by July. The previous year according to Law360 Endo paid $830 million to settle 20,000 suits. “In a joint motion to dismiss, AMS said it had compromised and settled claims in roughly 135 suits filed by ... Read More