New Jersey Translations Company to Pay U.S. $1.5 Million to Settle False Claims Act Allegations
PITTSBURGH – Para-Plus Translations, Inc., a New Jersey corporation that contracts with federal and state agencies for interpretation, transcription and translation services, together with its owners, Robert Santiago, III and Sonia Santiago (collectively “Para-Plus”), will pay the United States, Delaware and New Jersey a total of $1.5 million (“Settlement Amount”) to settle False Claims Act allegations, Acting United States Attorney Soo C. Song announced today.
The settlement resolves allegations in a whistleblower lawsuit that was filed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and handled on behalf of the United States by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Pennsylvania. The settled claims contended that Para-Plus violated the False Claims Act by submitting false claims for payment to various federal and state agencies, including components of the United States Department of Justice. Specifically, the Complaint alleged that Para-Plus submitted invoices to federal and state governmental clients that purposefully overstated the travel time and mileage incurred by its interpreters.
“As this settlement demonstrates, we will continue to enforce the law to ensure that federal monies are used to benefit the public,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Song.
This matter was investigated by the Office of Inspector General of the United States Department of Justice. Assistant United States Attorney Colin J. Callahan handled this matter on behalf of the United States. Deputy Attorney Generals Edward K. Black and Kent D. Anderson handled this matter on behalf of, respectively, Delaware and New Jersey.
This case is captioned United States ex rel. Kimberly Martin v. Para-Plus Translations, Inc. and Robert Santiago, III, Civil No. 14-3952 (EDPA). The claims resolved by the settlement are allegations only, and there has been no determination of liability.