APL settles over failure to deliver on contract
Shipping company do not admit liability
US shipping company APL Limited will pay $9.8 million to resolve allegations that it broke US law in connection with a contract to provide GPS tracking of shipping containers in Afghanistan.
The Corporate Crime Reporter reported last month that APL violated the False Claims Act after it failed to properly deliver on a US Department of Defense contract. The company was required to affix a satellite tracking device to shipping containers transported from Karachi, Pakistan to U.S. military bases in Afghanistan.
Container ships, Wiki Images
Federal officials alleged that APL billed the the Department of Defense for tracking services despite knowing that the devices completely or partially failed to transmit data, or were not affixed to shipping containers.
The government also claims that APL attached a single satellite tracking device to two shipping containers despite being required to affix one device to every container.
“We will continue to ensure that there are appropriate consequences for those who knowingly fail to live up to their bargain and misuse taxpayer funds.” said Principal Assistant Attorney General Benjamin C. Mizer, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division.
The Department of Justice noted that the claims resolved by the civil settlement are allegations only; there has been no determination of liability.
In 2009, APL Limited agreed to pay the government $26.3 million to resolve allegations that it submitted false claims to the United States in connection with contracts to transport cargo in shipping containers to support U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. The government alleges that APL knowingly overcharged and double-billed the Department of Defense to transport thousands of containers from ports to inland delivery destinations in Iraq and Afghanistan.
APL, an ocean carrier based in Scottsdale, Arizona, is a wholly-owned American subsidiary of Singapore-based Neptune Orient Lines Limited.