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THE LATEST ON GOVERNMENT INQUIRIES AND ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS

Government Investigations and White Collar Litigation Group

Edwin O. Childs

Photo of Edwin O. Childs Ned Childs is a government contract and investigations and enforcement attorney who represents companies across a wide range of sectors, including the defense, services, technology, and aerospace industries. His practice, spanning more than a decade in Washington, encompasses a broad array of legal services, including government contract investigations, disclosures, and regulatory enforcement actions; bid protests and government contract disputes; government contract counseling; export licensing and enforcement; prime contractor-subcontractor disputes; corporate ownership and acquisition issues; and election law investigations and enforcement matters.

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Department of Labor Proposes Rule Granting Government Contractor Employees Right of First Refusal

Government Contracts
On July 15, the U.S. Department of Labor proposed a new regulation that would require successor government contractors to offer employees of predecessor contractors the first right of refusal for employment on certain contracts. Read on for more information about the proposed regulation.… Continue Reading

DOJ and Aerojet Settle for $9 Million in Qui Tam Cybersecurity False Claims Act Case

Fraud, Deception and False Claims, Government Contracts
On July 8, 2022, the U.S. Department of Justice announced a $9 million settlement with federal government contractor Aerojet Rocketdyne, Inc. for alleged violations of the False Claims Act in a case pending in the Eastern District of California. The settlement results from alleged false statements by Aerojet related to compliance with Department of Defense… Continue Reading

New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
As the world watched in horror over the atrocities occurring in the war zones of Ukraine this week, global leaders re-doubled their efforts to bring increasing sanctions pressure to bear on Russian industry, the Russian economy and the sphere of influence surrounding Russian President Vladimir Putin.  The U.S., UK and EU rolled out a series… Continue Reading

Largest-Ever Small-Business Contracting Fraud Settlement Related to Pass-Through Subcontracting

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Government Contracts
Federal contractors should take note of a $48.5 million False Claims Act settlement between the Department of Justice and TriMark USA LLC — the largest-ever FCA settlement based on allegations of small-business set-aside contracting fraud. DOJ alleged that TriMark had a plan to circumvent specific small-business contracting requirements by providing significant assistance to three small… Continue Reading

Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATE: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) As we approach the thirty day mark since the United States, and other Western countries began imposing a series of rigorous sanctions on the Russian economy and key components thereof, we are starting to see real evidence of their broad impact. … Continue Reading

DOJ Settles First False Claims Act Enforcement Action Since Launch of Civil Cyber-Fraud Initiative

Fraud, Deception and False Claims
On March 8, 2022, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a $930,000 settlement with Comprehensive Health Services, LLC (CHS) for alleged violations of the False Claims Act (FCA). This settlement marks DOJ’s first resolution of an FCA enforcement action involving cyber fraud after launching its Civil Cyber-Fraud Initiative in October 2021, signaling DOJ’s eagerness to combat cybersecurity violations… Continue Reading

Biden Administration Amends “Buy American” Rules to Increase Domestic Content Requirements

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends
On March 7, the Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council promulgated a final rule aimed at increasing federal government preferences for goods and construction materials that are domestically manufactured and increasing the required domestic content threshold for purchases governed by the Buy American Act. Read on for highlights from the rule and next steps for government contractors… Continue Reading

DOJ Launches “Task Force KleptoCapture” in Response to Russian Invasion

Anti-Bribery and Corruption, Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATES: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions (March 24, 2022) FinCEN Encourages “Increased Vigilance” and Highlights Red Flags for Evasion of Russian Sanctions including Use of Virtual Currency (March 16, 2022) Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)… Continue Reading

U.S. and Allies Significantly Expand Sanctions and Related Restrictions on Russia and Belarus

Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATES: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions (March 24, 2022) FinCEN Encourages “Increased Vigilance” and Highlights Red Flags for Evasion of Russian Sanctions including Use of Virtual Currency (March 16, 2022) DOJ Launches “Task Force KleptoCapture” in Response to… Continue Reading

Additional Sanctions on Russia and the Importance of Business Contingency Planning

Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATES: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions (March 24, 2022) FinCEN Encourages “Increased Vigilance” and Highlights Red Flags for Evasion of Russian Sanctions including Use of Virtual Currency (March 16, 2022) DOJ Launches “Task Force KleptoCapture” in Response to… Continue Reading

Biden Administration Issues Initial Ukraine Sanctions

Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATES: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions (March 24, 2022) FinCEN Encourages “Increased Vigilance” and Highlights Red Flags for Evasion of Russian Sanctions including Use of Virtual Currency (March 16, 2022) DOJ Launches “Task Force KleptoCapture” in Response to… Continue Reading

Analysis of DOJ’s 2021 FCA Statistics and the Trends Therein

Fraud, Deception and False Claims
Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ or Department) announced that it recovered over $5.6 billion under the False Claims Act (FCA) in Fiscal Year 2021.[1] That is a massive headline haul that is second only to the roughly $6 billion recovered under the FCA in FY 2014, when there were $3.1 billion in… Continue Reading

What Significant Russian Sanctions Could Look Like, and How to Prepare

Sanctions, Trade Embargo, and Export Controls
RELATED UPDATES: New Revelations in Ukraine Lead to Tightening Global Sanctions (April 8, 2022) Western Companies Starting to Feel Impact of Russian Sanctions (March 24, 2022) FinCEN Encourages “Increased Vigilance” and Highlights Red Flags for Evasion of Russian Sanctions including Use of Virtual Currency (March 16, 2022) DOJ Launches “Task Force KleptoCapture” in Response to… Continue Reading

CMMC 2.0: Department of Defense Revamps Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification Program

Government Contracts
On November 4, 2021, the Department of Defense (DoD) announced significant changes to the strategic direction of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification (CMMC) program.  Specifically, DoD stated that the goal of these changes is to simplify the CMMC standard and prioritize the protection of certain types of controlled defense information.  After a nine-month internal review by the… Continue Reading

Department of Justice Announces National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Financial Institution Regulation
On October 6, 2021, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced its plans for increased scrutiny of the cryptocurrency market with the creation of a National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team (NCET) to pursue criminal investigations and actions against cryptocurrency misuse. The NCET will focus on “crimes committed by virtual currency exchanges, mixing and tumbling services, and… Continue Reading

Department of Justice Announces Increased FCA Enforcement Through New Civil Cyber-Fraud Initiative

Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Fraud, Deception and False Claims
On October 6, 2021, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a new Civil Fraud Cyber Initiative to “combine the department’s expertise in civil fraud enforcement, government procurement and cybersecurity to combat new and emerging cyber threats to the security of sensitive information and critical systems.”… Continue Reading

President Biden Announces Findings of Critical Supply Chain Assessment

Government Contracts
On June 8, the White House released the findings of a 100-day assessment of critical supply chains, identifying actions needed to bolster domestic manufacturing of critical goods, reduce dependence on foreign nations for supply chain needs, create jobs and address unfair trade practices. For highlights of the report detailing structural weaknesses in supply chains for… Continue Reading

Biden Administration Orders Improvements to Cybersecurity and Federal Networks Amid Cyberattacks

Government Contracts
On May 12, President Biden signed an executive order mandating that the federal government significantly improve cybersecurity within its networks and modernize federal cyber defenses. This move follows a series of cyberattacks on private companies and federal government networks over the past year, including a recent incident that resulted in gasoline shortages along the U.S.… Continue Reading

Biden Administration Orders $15 Minimum Wage for Federal Contractors

Government Contracts
On April 27, 2021, President Biden signed an Executive Order (EO) requiring federal contractors performing service, construction or concession contracts to pay a $15 minimum wage to those employees who are working on such contracts. As noted in the White House Fact Sheet, this EO will build on Executive Order 13658 (signed in February 2014), under which the government… Continue Reading

Biden Administration Orders Comprehensive Review of U.S. Supply Chain

Government Contracts
On Feb. 24, 2021, President Joe Biden signed an executive order (EO) triggering a comprehensive review of U.S. supply chains, ordering agencies to identify ways to secure the American economy against shortages of critical and essential goods. As noted by the White House, this EO requires federal agencies to conduct a two-phase review of U.S. supply chains. First,… Continue Reading

Ask Those Questions: Federal Circuit Highlights Required Step for GAO Protesters Seeking Relaxed Automatic Stay Deadline in DOD Procurements

Government Contracts
Disappointed government contractors and their legal counsel weigh the benefits of filing bid protests at the Government Accountability Office (GAO) versus the Court of Federal Claims (COFC). One of the key benefits to filing a protest with the GAO is that, under the Competition in Contracting Act (CICA) automatic stay provision, a GAO protester who… Continue Reading

The DFARS Rule on Covered Telecommunications Equipment or Services Is Final

Compliance, Enforcement and Prosecution Policy and Trends, Government Contracts
The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a final rule on Covered Telecommunications Equipment or Services that implements Section 1656 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 (Pub. L. 115-91). To read more of our analysis, please click here.… Continue Reading

Biden Administration to Strengthen “Buy American” Rules

Government Contracts
On Jan. 25, 2021, President Joseph R. Biden signed an executive order aimed at strengthening “Buy American” rules to increase the federal government’s procurement of American-made goods. According to the White House, this order makes several significant changes to the implementation of the laws requiring federal government agencies to procure materials and products domestically. Click here to continue… Continue Reading

Positive FCA Enforcement Trend for Defense Contractors: DOJ Reaffirms Commitment to Exercise Statutory Authority to Dismiss

Compliance
Following recent changes to Department of Justice policy regarding individual accountability in government investigations of corporate wrongdoing, DOJ has recently further demonstrated its willingness to consider a flexible approach in applying the False Claims Act. In a January 28, 2019 speech by Deputy Associate Attorney General Stephen Cox to the 2019 Advanced Forum on False Claims… Continue Reading

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