Tuesday, November 7, 2023

GE Aerospace Agrees To Pay $9.4 Million To Resolve Allegations Of False Claims Act Violations

The U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts released the below link:

BOSTON – GE Aerospace, an operating division of the General Electric Company, has agreed to pay $9,413,024 to resolve allegations that its Lynn, Mass. manufacturing plant (GEA Lynn) sold parts to the United States Army and the United States Navy that were either not properly inspected or were nonconforming, in violation of the False Claims Act. 

Headquartered in Evendale, Ohio, GE Aerospace manufactures aircraft engines that it sells to U.S. military customers. Engines that GEA Lynn sells to U.S. military customers must meet the requirements established by engineering drawings. To meet those requirements, GEA Lynn further requires employees to follow manufacturing planning instructions including parts inspections, among other requirements. GE Aerospace admits that, at times from July 24, 2012 to Dec. 31, 2019, GEA Lynn did not conduct required parts inspections and sold engines containing parts that did not meet certain required specifications to U.S. miliary customers. Specifically: 

1.     Between July 24, 2014 and Aug. 11, 2017, GEA Lynn did not consistently use functional gauges to inspect features on certain parts; 

2.     Between July 24, 2014 and Sept. 2018, GEA Lynn omitted at least two inspections of curvic features on certain part numbers; and

3.     Between July 24, 2014 and Dec. 31, 2019, GEA Lynn sold engines to the U.S Army and the U.S. Navy that contained unallowable metal fragments. 

“The Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS), the law enforcement arm of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Office of Inspector General, is fully committed to protecting the DoD procurement process,” said Patrick J. Hegarty, Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Defense, Office of Inspector General, Defense Criminal Investigative Service, Northeast Field Office. “Failing to inspect parts as required by contract specifications compromises military systems and potentially endangers the lives of U.S. service members. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners and the Department of Justice to investigate DoD contractors that submit false claims to DoD agencies and threaten the DoD supply chain.”

“The provision of non-conforming parts for Department of Defense aircraft engines could pose a substantial threat to warfighter safety and readiness,” said Greg Gross, Special Agent in Charge Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), Economic Crimes Field Office. “We thank our law enforcement partners and the Department of Justice for their significant efforts on this complex investigation. NCIS remains committed to ensuring the integrity of the DoD procurement process.”

“The results of this investigation shows that our agents, and those of our partner law enforcement agencies, are relentless in their pursuit of those who attempt to defraud the U.S. Government and put our Warfighters lives at risk,” said Supervisory Special Agent John Scarlett, Department of the Army Criminal Investigation Division, Major Procurement Fraud Field Office, Northeast Fraud Resident Agency. “This case should send a clear message to all who do business with the Department of the Army that we are committed to identifying and stopping contractor fraud.”

Acting U.S. Attorney Levy, DCIS SAC Hegarty, NCIS SAC Gross, and DCIS SSA Scarlett Northeast Fraud Resident Agency made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Lindsey Ross and Alexandra Brazier of the Affirmative Civil Enforcement Unit handled the matter. 

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