Spartan Motors Inc. and its subsidiary, Spartan Chassis Inc., have agreed to pay the United States $1.7 million to resolve allegations that it paid kickbacks to an employee of Force Protection Inc. to receive the subcontract to provide chassis for armored vehicles for the United States Military, the Justice Department announced today (Dec. 23).
The United States contends that Spartan paid approximately $100,000 to an employee of Force Protection in return for that employee’s agreement to have Force Protection purchase truck chassis from Spartan to be used for both the Army’s and the Marine Corp’s Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles. The settlement resolves Spartan’s potential civil liability under the Anti-Kickback statute.
Under the Anti-Kickback statute, a party is civilly liable to the United States for twice the amount of the kickback paid plus up to $10,000 per incident. Here, the United States contends that Spartan paid kickbacks for the sale of 136 chassis.
“This settlement evidences the United States’ determination to combat schemes that undercut the integrity of the military’s procurement of necessary products,” said Gregory G. Katsas, Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Civil Division.
“We are pleased to have been able to resolve this matter. This is a significant settlement,” said Walt Wilkins, U.S. attorney for the District of South Carolina. “Corporations and individuals alike must act in an honorable, ethical and legal manner when contracting to provide goods and services to the government.”