DOJ Reaches False Claims Act Resolution With Defense Contractor

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Close up of Court, representing Expanded Whistleblower Program

The U.S. Department of Justice recently partially unsealed a whistleblower’s false claims act case against Federal Cartridge Co., a subsidiary of Alliant Techsystems, Inc., alleging that approximately 30 to 40 percent of the lots of ammo provided by the company failed to pass government specifications but were still distributed to Immigration and Customs Enforcement field offices around the country.

According to the lawsuit, the defects included rounds with “light loads”, causing bullets to stick in gun barrels. It is further alleged that the company also provided defective “heavy loads” that caused bullets to damage guns. The complaint also indicates that the shells had no gunpowder and in at least one case, the projectile part of the bullet was inserted backward into the cartridge.

According to the courageous whistleblower in this case, Jeffrey Campbell, and as reported here, “the defects were so prevalent that he and other employees worried about the rounds continuing to ship to field offices because they were dangerous.”

The company recalled some of the ammo due to the report of defects but replaced it with rounds from other lots that had failed quality tests. Pursuant o the False Claims Act, Campbell sued on behalf of the United States and as a result will share in a portion of the government’s recovery.  The contract for the ammunition was worth up to $90 million, the lawsuit says. As often is the case with government fraud, the acts of the whistleblower in this case will not only save taxpayer funds but it will also increase the safety of those will serve and protect our country.

The motion to unseal revealed that the government and company have reached a settlement on everything except attorneys’ fees.