LAWFUEL – The Law News Network – Bearingpoint, Inc.; Booz Allen Hamilton, Inc.; Ernst & Young, LLP; and KPMG, LLP have each settled lawsuits concerning false claims allegedly submitted to various agencies of the United States in connection with travel reimbursement.
Bearingpoint has agreed to pay $15 million to settle the matter, Booz Allen has agreed to pay $3,365,664, E&Y has agreed to pay $4,471,980 and KPMG has agreed to pay $2,770,000.
In relation to work performed for the government, all four firms received rebates on travel expenses from credit card companies, airlines, hotels, rental car agencies and travel service providers. The companies did not consistently disclose the existence of these travel rebates to the United States and did not reduce travel reimbursement claims by the amounts of the rebates. The lawsuits alleged that Bearingpoint, Booz Allen, Ernst & Young and KPMG each knowingly presented claims for payment to the United States for amounts greater than the travel expenses actually incurred, in violation of contractual provisions and the applicable provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulations.
United States District Judge Dean D. Pregerson today unsealed the four lawsuits, and the government moved to dismiss the cases against the four firms. The firms each paid the monetary settlements last week.
The settlement resolves separate complaints that were filed in 2001 under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act. The actions were filed by Neal A. Roberts, a former partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC. The qui tam provision allows persons who file actions alleging fraud against the government to receive a share of any resulting recovery. Mr. Roberts will receive an amount to be determined in the near future. Previously, Mr. Roberts former employer paid nearly $42 million to resolve similar allegations of fraud against the government, see: .
The settlements resulted from an investigation by the Civil Division of the Department of Justice, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California, the Army’s Criminal Investigation Division (Major Procurement Fraud Unit), the Defense Criminal Investigative Service, the Defense Contract Audit Agency, and the Offices of the Inspector General for the Department of Energy, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the Department of Transportation, the General Services Administration, the United States Postal Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, the United States Agency for International Development and the Department of Treasury.