From: Department of Justice
Posted: Tuesday, July 19, 2005
WASHINGTON, D.C. - PriceWaterhouseCoopers, LLP (PWC) has agreed to pay $41.9 million to settle allegations that it made false claims to the United States in connection with claims it made to federal agencies for travel reimbursement. PWC received rebates on its travel expenses from travel and credit card companies, airlines, hotels, rental car agencies, and travel service providers.
The government alleges that PWC did not consistently disclose the existence of these travel rebates to the United States and did not reduce its travel reimbursement claims by the amounts of the rebates. The government's complaint alleged that PWC knowingly presented claims for payment to the United States for amounts greater than the travel expenses actually incurred and in violation of contractual provisions and the applicable provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulations.
"It is absolutely essential that government contractors adhere to contract requirements," said Peter D. Keisler, Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Civil Division. "The federal government relies on the honesty of its contractors to provide accurate billing information."
The settlement resolves a suit filed under the qui tam or whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act by Neal A. Roberts in January, 2001. The False Claims Act qui tam statute allows persons who file successful 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.
The settlement resulted from an investigation by the Justice Department's Civil Division, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles, 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 the Treasury.
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