December 17, 2011 |
Pharmacy and prescription drug management company CVS Caremark Corp. has agreed to pay nearly $20 million to settle three lawsuits involving allegations that it defrauded pension systems in three states, including California's giant pension fund, attorneys said. The whistle-blower lawsuits, filed by two former CVS Caremark pharmacists, accused the company of reselling returned drugs, changing prescription orders to make them more expensive and submitting false reports about how long it took to fill prescriptions.
November 22, 2011 |
The ruling African National Congress pushed a secrecy law through Parliament on Tuesday over the objections of Nobel laureates, opposition politicians and editors who complained that it will have a chilling effect on whistle-blowers and investigative journalism in a country rife with corruption. Critics said the law, which makes it illegal to reveal state secrets, lacks a provision allowing a legal defense for acting in the public interest by exposing criminality, corruption or incompetence.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 16, 2011 |
David Dutcher met Sharon on Match.com in late 2008, a few months after separating from his wife. "We had a lot in common," he recalled. Sharon loved four-wheel-drive trucks and sports. They met for coffee, then dinner. Sharon was tall, slender, blond and beautiful. She moaned that she had not had sex in a long time. She told him he had large, strong hands and wondered if that portended other things. She described his kisses as "yummy. " "It felt a lot like Christmas," said Dutcher, 49, a tall, burly engineer with wavy red hair.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 11, 2011 |
Dismayed by one City Council member's repeated whistle-blowing about the embattled city, Montebello City Council members are slated Wednesday to discuss rules on how council members communicate and use city letterhead. The move comes after some city officials expressed outrage that Councilwoman Christina Cortez used city letterhead to ask the Los Angeles County district attorney and the state controller to investigate the city. One rule would call for council members to provide for the printed agenda "a brief general description" of what they plan to discuss during public comments, "expressed in complete sentences.
August 20, 2011 |
An appeals court has restored a whistle-blower lawsuit that accuses Santa Ana-based Corinthian Colleges of violating federal law by paying bonuses to recruiters based on the number of students they enrolled at the company's for-profit vocational colleges. Federal law prohibits colleges from paying commissions based on the number of students a recruiter enrolls. The requirement is intended to prevent recruiters from signing up poorly qualified students who would eventually drop out and be unwilling or unable to repay federally guaranteed loans.
July 6, 2011 |
Walter Tamosaitis, once a top engineer in the nation's nuclear weapons cleanup program, has been relegated to a basement storage room equipped with cardboard-box and plywood furniture with nothing to do for the last year. Tamosaitis' bosses sent him there when he persisted in raising concerns about risks at the Energy Department's project to deal with millions of gallons of radioactive waste near Hanford, Wash., including the potential for hydrogen gas explosions. "Walt is killing us," said Frank Russo, Bechtel Corp.'s top manager at the project, in an email to Tamosaitis' boss urging that the engineer be brought under control.
June 21, 2011 |
Reporting from Sacramento The California Public Employees' Retirement System signed a $575 million-a-year contract with CVS Caremark Corp. to provide prescription drug benefits to 346,000 members. The contract, announced Monday, came more than two weeks after Caremark settled a whistle-blower lawsuit alleging fraud in earlier contracts involving CalPERS and pension funds in other states. CalPERS negotiated the new three-year agreement with Caremark after the fund's board canceled negotiations in March with a competitor, Medco Health Solutions Inc. An internal investigation revealed that Medco allegedly had paid more than $4 million in bribes to win an earlier contract in 2006.
May 20, 2011 |
Quest Diagnostics Inc., the biggest provider of medical lab services in California, has agreed to pay $241 million to settle a whistle-blower's lawsuit that accused it of overcharging the state Medi-Cal program. The lawsuit also alleged that the Madison, N.J., company paid illegal kickbacks to doctors, hospitals and clinics that sent patients their way. The settlement was the largest in the history of California's False Claims Act, which allows private citizens to sue on behalf of the state if they have evidence that a government contractor has defrauded a state agency.
May 9, 2011 |
CompUSA Chief Executive Gilbert Fiorentino has agreed to resign and return $11 million in assets to the electronics retailer's parent company in the wake of a whistle-blower investigation. Systemax Inc., parent of Miami-based CompUSA and TigerDirect, announced Monday that it had reached an agreement with Fiorentino that calls for the surrender of 1.13 million shares of Systemax stock he owns and a payment of $480,000 in cash. The agreement also requires Fiorentino to disclose his and his immediate family's personal assets and forfeit undisclosed assets discovered by Systemax.
April 16, 2011 |
The California Public Employees' Retirement System is negotiating a lucrative pharmacy benefits management contract with Caremark Rx Inc., a company being sued for defrauding the pension fund of tens of millions of dollars. It's the second embarrassing misstep by CalPERS in the last month as the scandal-plagued agency seeks a contractor to manage the delivery of mail-order prescription drugs for about 300,000 state and local government workers, retirees and their families. CalPERS is the largest buyer of healthcare benefits after the U.S. government.