SPOKANE, Wash. (Legal Newsline) — The Department of Justice announced Jan. 23 that Washington River Protection Solutions LLC (WRPS) will pay $5.275 million after allegations of submitting false claims to the Department of Energy (DOE) about overtime and premium pay on a contract assignment.
“The monies utilized by DOE to fund important nuclear site environmental remediation across the nation are both precious and limited,” said deputy assistant attorney general Joyce R. Branda of the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “Today’s settlement demonstrates that the Department of Justice will pursue contractors that knowingly divert those funds from the projects for which they were provided.”
According to allegations, WRPS has received millions of dollars from the DOE to clean up an area of the DOE’s Hanford Nuclear Site. WRPS purportedly allowed fraud to occur in its timekeeping systems on site, and also allegedly failed to comply with the contract’s internal audit requirements.
“This resolution demonstrates law enforcement’s continuing resolve in the Eastern District of Washington to hold fraudsters at all levels accountable,” said U.S. attorney Michael C. Ormsby for the Eastern District of Washington. “In particular, the ongoing anti-fraud efforts at Hanford continue to be bolstered by the outstanding dedication of this office’s partners at the Department of Energy Office of Inspector General and at the Department of Justice Civil Frauds Section.”