Whistleblower Law Blog

Contractor Pays $1.15 Million for Faking Partnership with Native American Business

An Alabama contractor agreed to pay $1.15 million to settle civil claims that it lied about hiring a Native American-owned company to help build barracks at two U.S. Army bases.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Caddell Construction illegally claimed reimbursements under two Department of Defense programs: The Mentor-Protégé Program, which helps disadvantaged small businesses, and the Indian Incentive Program, which helps businesses owned by Native Americans.

Caddell said it was building the barracks in a mentoring relationship with Montana-based Mountain Chief Management Services, a Native American- and woman-owned business. In reality, Mountain Chief performed no work, the Justice Department said — and Caddell’s claims violated the False Claims Act.

In December 2012 Caddell paid a $2 million penalty to settle related charges of criminal fraud. A former Caddell executive, Mark Hill, and Mountain Chief’s former president, Daniel Chattin, were indicted in federal court and await trial for fraud.

Caddell avoided criminal charges by cooperating with prosecutors, the Justice Department said.

The Employment Law Group® law firm’s whistleblower attorneys have helped many clients file suit against employers that fraudulently bill the U.S. government, and have established favorable precedents under the retaliation provision of the False Claims Act.

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