Whistleblower Insider

Whistleblower Insider is written by the Constantine Cannon law firm team of experienced qui tam and whistleblower lawyers. It is updated daily to provide the latest whistleblower and fraud news and developments.
Subscribe


December 22, 2014

In Their Own Words

– “YOU CAN’T ARGUE WITH SUCCESS.  YOU CAN’T ARGUE WITH CLOSE TO $6 BILLION THIS FISCAL YEAR, WHICH IS THE LARGEST AMOUNT WE’VE EVER RECOVERED.”

Joyce Branda, head of the DOJ’s Civil Division, in her PBS Newshour panel discussion on whether the False Claims Act, with its heavy reliance on whistleblowers, actually deters fraud.

December 19, 2014

Whistleblower News From The Inside

By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team

Second BofA Whistleblower To Get $56M – Whistleblower says he will receive the reward out of the $16.65B the bank agreed to pay to settle claims arising from the investigation into its mortgage lending for providing information to the government showing the bank deliberately used “improper appraisal practices” that overstated the value of the homes by $6.6 billion.  NYT

Whistleblower Says Aircraft Parts Supplier Cut Corners on Safety – Complaint says Ameri-King ordered workers to scrub off “Made in China” labels and replace them with “Made in USA” labels, even though many of the parts imported from China and relabeled were found to be faulty and that the company sold repaired parts as new.  Courthouse News

Japanese Activist Challenges Secrets Law with Whistleblower Tool —  A Japanese Internet activist and academic is challenging a new state secrets law by setting up a website aimed at making it easier for government officials to leak sensitive information to the media using an open source platform called GlobaLeaks. Reuters

Former Rite Aid VP and Businessman Charged in $14.6M Fraud Scheme — The charges are based upon the pair’s alleged nine year conspiracy to defraud Rite Aid by making Rite Aid believe its surplus inventory had been sold to one company when, in fact, the inventory had been sold to third parties for greater amounts.  DOJ

SEC Charges NY Firm of Targeting Seniors in Boiler Room Scheme — The SEC alleges that Premier Links, Inc., and its owners cold-called senior’s names from a list they maintained and using high-pressure sales tactics to convince them to invest in companies purportedly on the brink of conducting initial public offerings, but they never disclosed to the investors that only a small fraction of the money would be transmitted to the promoted companies while the rest went to Premier Link’s companies.  SEC

Whistleblower Speaks on Successful NP Precision Case – Former administrative assistant for machinery defense contractor NP Precision Inc. speaks about her journey as a whistleblower from first blowing the whistle on the company’s misuse of funds to her former boss pleading guilty to fraud.   Philadelphia Business Journal

December 19, 2014

In Their Own Words

– “THE REASON I REPORTED IT WAS BECAUSE I COULDN’T LET IT GO ON ANYMORE. I WAS AFRAID FOR MY SAFETY AND CAREER BUT I…DECIDED TO GO AHEAD WITH IT.”

Whistleblower Amy Farrow who reported defense contractor NP Precision Inc. was misusing progress payments on government contracts by failing to pay subcontractors and requesting progress payments under the contracts for costs that NP Precision had not actually incurred, and without the intention of using the progress payments for the costs and contracts at issue.  Click here for more.

December 19, 2014

DOJ Catch of the Week — Avon Products

By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team

This week’s Department of Justice “catch of the week” goes to New York-based cosmetics company Avon Products. On Wednesday, its wholly owned subsidiary Avon Products (China) Co. Ltd. pleaded guilty to violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) by making and concealing illicit payments to Chinese government officials to secure business there. The company agreed to pay more than $135 million in criminal and regulatory penalties to resolve the charges. See DOJ Press Release.

click here for more »

December 18, 2014

Whistleblower Spotlight: FIFA Whistleblower Phaedra Almajid

By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team

This week’s “Whistleblower Spotlight” shines on FIFA whistleblower Phaedra Almajid. Ms. Almajid worked in a senior communications role for FIFA and blew the whistle on bribery in the 2018 and 2022 FIFA World Cup bidding process. She claims she witnessed firsthand bribes made to the African FIFA executives Issa Hayatou, Jacques Anouma and Amos Adamu of $1.5 million each to vote for Qatar. Ms. Almajid, along with another whistleblower, Australian Bonita Mersiades, gave evidence to lawyer Michael Garcia, who investigated their claims of wrongdoing over a two and a half year period and submitted a report to FIFA with his findings.

click here for more »

December 18, 2014

Whistleblowers Beware Of What Company Documents You Take To Support Your Qui Tam Case.

By the C|C Whistleblower Lawyer Team

A cautionary note for would-be whistleblowers. When it comes to internal company documents that reveal fraud or misconduct, you may assume you have broad license to take them and use them to support your potential False Claims Act case. You do not. As made clear in last week’s Eastern District of Pennsylvania decision Notorfransesco v. Surgical Monitoring Assoc., it all depends on the surrounding circumstances. And whistleblowers who fall on the wrong side of the equation can end up in just as much hot water as the company about which they are complaining.

click here for more »

December 18, 2014

Countrywide Financial Whistleblower Earns $57 Million Reward

By Jason Enzler

Edward O’Donnell, a former Vice-President of Countrywide Financial, has been awarded a $57 million bounty as part of a settlement of his False Claims Act lawsuit against his former employer.  According to a New York Times report, Mr. O’Donnell filed his lawsuit earlier this year alleging that Countrywide defrauded Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac by selling problematic mortgage-related securities.  The award is part of a deal with the government recognizing Mr. O’Donnell’s role in reaching a $16.65 billion settlement with Bank of America for charges of mortgage fraud (Bank of America acquired Countrywide in 2008 for $4 billion).

click here for more »

December 17, 2014

In Their Own Words

– “Woe be to any other person who cares enough to risk personal safety to report FIFA corruption.”

Phaedra Al-Majid commenting on her claim that the world’s governing soccer body mistreated her and another whistleblower.