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Defense Contractor Settles Whistleblower Case For $36.9 Million

Defense contractor ATK Launch Systems, Inc. (“ATK”) has agreed to settle a whistleblower case for $36.9 million. The lawsuit was initially brought by whistleblower Kendall Dye, an ATK program manager, under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.

The whistleblower alleged that, from 2000 to 2006, ATK sold dangerous and defective combat illumination flares (“combat flares”) to the United States Army and United States Air Force. Combat flares are used by the military for nighttime combat, covert, and search and rescue operations. The combat flares burn in excess of 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit and are supposed to burn for more than 5 minutes.

The whistleblower alleged that ATK knew that the combat flares it delivered to the military could not drop 10-feet without exploding or igniting, as required by government specifications. The whistleblower’s qui tam complaint dates back 10 years when the combat flares were made by its predecessor company, Thiokol Chemical Co. ATK purchased Thiokol in 2001.

In addition to a payment of $21 million to the United States, ATK has agreed to fix the 76,000 flares remaining in the government’s inventory at a cost to ATK of approximately $15.9 million. The Justice Department has not announced the amount of the reward the whistleblower will receive. Whistleblowers typically receive between 15% and 25% of the settlement amount under the qui tam provisions of the False Claims Act.

If you have any firsthand knowledge, information, or evidence related to any federal, state, county or city government fraud, you should speak with an experienced qui tam lawyer who can help you understand your legal rights and help you obtain the compensation you deserve.

If you have a claim, contact the Florida whistleblower attorneys at McCabe Rabin, P.A. for a free and confidential consultation by calling toll free at 877.915.4040 or by e-mail to kelly@mccaberabin.com.

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