Belgian banks gain dismissal of suit over allegedly dishonored checks

From Westlaw Journal Bank & Lender Liability: A New York federal judge has ruled that a U.S.-incorporated company that claims that two Belgian banks wrongfully dishonored checks cannot pursue a lawsuit against the institutions in the United States.

Judge Richard J. Sullivan of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed the claims filed by Midamines SPRL Ltd. and company officer Hassan A. Abbas against Belgian banks KBC Bank NV and Antwerp Diamantse Bank NV.  Midamines is incorporated in Illinois.

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Construction firm ends SBA fraud case for $928,000

From Westlaw Journal Government Contract:  A Utah-based construction company will pay the United States $928,000 to resolve a lawsuit alleging it defrauded the Small Business Administration while participating in one of the agency’s government contracting programs.

The payment by Okland Construction Co. settles allegations that the business violated the False Claims Act by obtaining SBA contracts that it was not entitled to win because they were reserved for small firms, the Justice Department said in a statement.  The FCA, 31 U.S.C. § 3729, is the government’s primary tool for fighting procurement fraud.

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Judge dismisses identity theft victim’s $10 million suit against JPMorgan

From Westlaw Journal Bank & Lender Liability: A New York federal judge has ruled that a woman victimized in an identity theft scheme allegedly perpetrated by JPMorgan Chase Bank employees cannot maintain her $10 million lawsuit against the bank.

Judge Robert W. Sweet of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York granted JPMorgan’s motion to dismiss Yelena Galper’s claims for identity theft and aiding and abetting identity theft.

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Contractor’s $12 million suit against Army Corps heads to trial

From Westlaw Journal Government Contract: The U.S. Court of Federal Claims has ruled that a dredging company must proceed to trial on its claims that the Army Corps of Engineers owes more than $12.4 million in damages as a result of allegedly defective plans for work on the Miami River in Florida.

Judge Elaine D. Kaplan said the claims raised by Weston/Bean Joint Venture would benefit from the full development that a trial can offer.

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Navy contractor ends False Claims Act suit for $6.5 million

From Westlaw Journal Government ContractA Virginia-based information technology company will pay the government $6.5 million to end a lawsuit alleging the business submitted inflated bills to the Navy.

The Department of Justice said in a Feb. 18 statement that the settlement by Vector Planning and Services Inc. resolves allegations that the company violated the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3729The statute is the government’s primary tool for fighting procurement fraud.

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Federal guidance helps banks serve legal marijuana businesses

From Westlaw Journal Bank & Lender Liability: The federal government has issued new guidance on the customer due diligence and reporting requirements for financial institutions providing services to legal marijuana businesses.

Issued by the Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network in coordination with the Department of Justice, the guidance will help banks, credit unions and money services firms comply with the Bank Secrecy Act when doing business with marijuana-related companies.

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U.S. won’t join fraud suit against Homeland Security contractor

The government will not join a lawsuit alleging Northrop Grumman Corp. defrauded the Department of Homeland Security while working on a $62 million contract to develop a missile defense system for use on civilian planes.

The United States notified the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on Jan. 22 that it would not intervene in former Northrop employee Leo Danielides’ suit against the company.

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Credit union blames Target for losses after data breach

A Pennsylvania credit union has alleged in a class-action lawsuit that Target Corp. is responsible for losses the institution suffered after hackers stole account holders’ credit and debit card data from the retailer’s computer system.

First Choice Federal Credit Union says that following the late 2013 security breach, it incurred expenses to cancel and reissue at least 75 credit and debit cards belonging to its account holders.

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Judge OKs informant’s $15 million contract suit against United States

A Colombian woman who acted as an informant for the United States can proceed with a $15 million lawsuit claiming the government breached a contract to help if she were prosecuted for a crime in her native country.

Judge Elaine D. Kaplan of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims denied the government’s motion to dismiss Claudia Astrid Hurtado Vargas’ suit arising from her activities in Colombia as an informant for a federal money laundering investigation.

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2 used car dealers accused of racial bias in credit deals

Two North Carolina used car dealerships are intentionally offering credit to black customers on predatory terms without regard to creditworthiness, state and federal authorities allege in a lawsuit.

Auto Fare Inc., Southeastern Auto Corp. and the companies’ owner, Zuhdi A. Saadeh, are violating the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1691, according to the complaint filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.

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