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Menz Bonner Komar & Koenigsberg Secures $330 Million Whistleblower Settlement in Sprint Tax Fraud Case

On December 21, 2018, New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood announced a $330 million settlement in a first-of-its-kind tax fraud qui tam whistleblower case against Sprint Communications, Inc. Menz Bonner Komar & Koenigsberg LLP represented the whistleblower that originally filed the case. The $330 million recovery is not only the largest by the Attorney General resulting from an action filed under the New York False Claims Act, but it is the largest recovery ever by a single state in an action brought under a state false claims act. Menz Bonner Komar & Koenigsberg’s client, Empire State Ventures, LLC, received $62.7 million from the settlement.

The firm represents the whistleblower who brought forward the allegations against Sprint in 2011. The Attorney General’s office joined the case in 2012 when it filed a superseding complaint alleging Sprint deliberately under-collected and under-paid millions of dollars in New York state and local sales taxes on flat-rate wireless calling plans starting in 2005. The Attorney General's lawsuit was the Office’s first ever tax enforcement action filed under the New York False Claims Act, which was amended to cover tax claims in 2010.

David Koenigsberg, who leads the False Claims Act practice at Menz Bonner Komar & Koenigsberg, said, “This case is a powerful illustration of how the False Claims Act enables individuals to step forward and expose significant fraud and how whistleblower law is particularly effective in helping the state catch tax offenders. We thank the New York Attorney General’s Office for doing an exceptional job working with us and our client to bring this case to a successful conclusion.”

With this settlement, David Koenigsberg has now used Federal and State False Claims Acts to recover more than $1 billion for federal, state and local governments in cases involving taxes, Medicare, Medicaid, defense contracts, government funded research, banking, education programs, and government contracting. Prior to entering private practice, Koenigsberg was the Chief of the Affirmative Civil Enforcement Unit of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York, where he represented the United States in False Claims Act cases.

David A. Koenigsberg
dkoenigsberg@mbkklaw.com
Partner
White Plains, NY
Phone: (914) 949-0222
Fax: (914) 997-4117