A federal judge in Western Pennsylvania has refused to dismiss a qui tam suit alleging that Pittsburgh-based Education Management Corp., which runs more than 100 campuses, defrauded the federal government of $11 billion in federal student aid by violating the terms of the Higher Education Act, which bars the distribution of incentives to college recruiters based on the number of students they draw.

Claims brought by two former recruiters for EDMC, later joined by the federal government and more than a dozen states, survived a motion to dismiss from the for-profit education giant in what U.S. District Judge Terrence F. McVerry called a “massive and complex case.”

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