The Justice Department has intervened in a whistleblower lawsuit against Texas-based Fluor Corp. and its subsidiary Fluor Hanford Inc. Fluor Hanford, Inc. provides various services to the government and to private customers. Whistleblower Loydene Rambo, a former Fluor employee, originally filed the False Claims Act lawsuit alleging that Fluor had committed fraud by failing to comply with the terms of its contract with the Department of Energy.
Whistleblower Alleges that Fluor Ignored Contractual Restriction on Lobbying
Fluor had a contract with the Department of Energy (DOE) from 1999 to 2008 to provide maintenance, security, and operational services for the DOE’s Hanford Nuclear Site. Pursuant to the contract, Fluor was responsible for operating and managing the Hazardous Materials Management and Emergency Response (HAMMER) Center, where Hanford site workers, first responders, and law enforcement personnel are trained.
The DOE contract allegedly was made conditional on Fluor’s certification that the company would not use federal funds to support lobbying activities. According to the whistleblower’s complaint, from 2005 to 2008, Fluor nevertheless used DOE funds to lobby congressional and executive branch officials to provide more funding for HAMMER.
Whistleblower Brought this Fraud to the Government’s Attention
The original whistleblower lawsuit was filed under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act, which allows private parties to sue wrongdoers on behalf of the federal government and share in any recovery. The United States can intervene in a qui tam suit and take responsibility for litigating it. Whether or not the government intervenes, the whistleblower is entitled to a share of any funds recovered.
Whistleblowers should know their rights under the False Claims Act. The attorneys at Waters & Kraus have decades of experience in working with whistleblowers and can help you in the process. Email us or call our whistleblower lawyers at 800.226.9880 to learn more about our practice and how we can assist.