In U.S. ex rel. Harper v. Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District, a “reverse false claim” is center stage. The whistleblower asks whether he had to plead that the water district subjectively knew that it was violating the terms of a land deed from the government and had not committed a mistake of law. Thomas Connors of Black McCuskey Souers & Arbaugh in Canton, Ohio, represents Leatra Harper; Jennifer Armstrong of Cleveland’s McDonald Hopkins is counsel to the water district.
Victaulic Co. v. United States ex rel. Customs Fraud Investigations challenges the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit’s interpretation of a civil procedure rule that requires a whistleblower’s complaint to “state with particularity the circumstances constituting fraud.” Victaulic’s counsel is Thomas Hill if Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman. Customs Fraud is represented by Jonathan Tycko of Washington’s Tycko & Zavareei. The National Association of Manufacturers and the American Association of Exporters and Importers filed amicus briefs for Victaulic. “NAM has a particular concern about the proliferation of unfounded qui tam FCA cases, the number of which has increased dramatically over just the past few years,” Douglas Baruch of Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson wrote in the brief for the manufacturer trade association.
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