U.K.-based medical device manufacturer Smith & Nephew has agreed to settle a qui tam suit and pay the United States government eight million dollars. The whistleblower, Sam Cox, sued Smith & Nephew under the whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act for violating the Trade Agreements Act (TAA). The whistleblower provisions permit private citizens known as “Relators” to bring lawsuits on behalf of the U.S. and receive a portion of proceeds of any settlement or judgment.
The TAA requires Government contractors to certify that they will only sell products to the Government that originate in the United States or a country that has signed a trade agreement with the United States. The law gives a preference to companies that sell products manufactured in the United States or in a country that is a trading partner. The whistleblower was represented by by the firm Sanford Heisler. In this case, Smith & Nephew violated the TAA by selling products that were manufactured in Malaysia, which is a country that has not executed a trade agreement with the United States.
Jeffrey Newman represents whistleblowers