This Wednesday I will be among the speakers at a virtual event discussing whistleblowers and antitrust enforcement.  The Federal Bar Association Qui Tam Section is hosting a free Zoom roundtable on Wednesday, April 28th at 12:00 noon Eastern on the False Claims Act and Antitrust Enforcement.  For more information and to register click here.

This is a timely program.  The Department of Justice has recently concluded an investigation/prosecution of bid rigging on Defense Department fuel contracts.  Several of the program speakers participated in this very successful matter.  In November 2018 the Antitrust Division and Civil Division announced that three South Korean oil refiners had agreed to plead guilty and to enter into civil settlements for rigging bids on United States Department of Defense Fuel Supply Contracts (here).  The investigation was started by a whistleblower filing a False Claims Act case.  The DOJ press release noted, “The United States’ False Claims Act civil investigation resulted from a whistleblower lawsuit filed under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.  Those provisions allow for private parties to sue on behalf of the United States and to share in any recovery.” Claims submitted for payment are “false” if the underlying contract has been fraudulently obtained by rigged. The government has entered into civil settlements of $205 million.  DOJ  Press  Release April 8, 2020 DOJ Agrees to Civil Settlement with Additional Firm Involved in Bid Rigging and Fraud Targeting Defense Department Fuel Supply Contracts for U.S. Military Bases in South Korea While the amount awarded to the whistleblower[s] who initiated the investigation is not known, at 15-25% of the total recovery, there was ample reward for coming forward and exposing the scheme.

This roundtable will examine the intersection of FCA and antitrust enforcement, including a discussion of DOJ coordination between the Antitrust and Civil Frauds divisions. What do antitrust cases look like, and how are they prosecuted and defended?  Our speakers represent all perspectives, with strong experience in both areas of law. The second half of the program will discuss the recently passed Criminal Antitrust Anti-Retaliation Act that provides protection for whistleblowers.  The panel will also discuss possible legislation that will expand the breadth of antitrust whistleblower options by providing a “bounty” for information that leads to criminal antitrust convictions and fines–much like the SEC whistleblower program.

This event is organized by the Qui Tam Section of the Federal Bar Association.

** OPENING REMARKS **

R. Scott Oswald
Managing Principal, The Employment Law Group, P.C.
Chair, FBA Qui Tam Section

** MODERATOR **

Rachel V. Rose
Principal, Rachel V. Rose – Attorney at Law, PLLC

** SPEAKERS **

Zachary Arbitman
Senior Associate, Youman & Caputo, LLC

Robert E. Connolly
Law Office of Robert E. Connolly

Kimberly A. Justice
Partner, Freed Kanner London & Millen, LLC

Bernard (Barry) A. Nigro Jr.
Partner, Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP

Andrew Steinberg
Senior Trial Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice

 

Sorry for the late notice posting about this event.  I hope you can Zoom in. For more information and to register click here.

Bob Connolly

 

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