The Justice Department has joined a whistleblower lawsuit against defense contractor Triple Canopy.
The lawsuit was filed in 2011 by Omar Badr, a former Triple Canopy employee.
Badr is represented by Day & Johns in Fairfax, Virginia.
Badr claims that the company submitted false claims for unqualified security guards under a contract to provide security in Iraq.
In June 2009, the Joint Contracting Command in Iraq/Afghanistan (JCC-I/A) awarded Triple Canopy a one-year, $10 million contract to perform a variety of security services at Al Asad Airbase – the second largest air base in Iraq.
The JCC-I/A was established by U.S. Central Command in November 2004, to provide contracting support related to the government’s relief and reconstruction efforts in Iraq.
Federal officials alleged that Triple Canopy knowingly billed the United States for hundreds of foreign nationals it hired as security guards who could not meet firearms proficiency tests established by the Army and required under the contract.
The tests ensure that security guards hired to protect U.S. and allied personnel are capable of firing their AK-47 assault rifles and other weapons safely and accurately.
The government also alleges that Triple Canopy’s managers in Iraq falsified test scorecards as a cover up to induce the government to pay for the unqualified guards, and that Triple Canopy continued to bill the government even after high-level officials at the company’s headquarters had been alerted to the misconduct.
The complaint alleges that Triple Canopy used the false qualification records in an attempt to persuade the JCC-I/A to award the company a second year of security work at the Al Asad Airbase.
“For a government contractor to knowingly provide deficient security services, as is alleged in this case, is unthinkable, especially in war time,” said Stuart F. Delery, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division of the Department of Justice.
“The department will do everything it can to ensure that contractors comply with critical contract requirements and that contractors who don’t comply aren’t permitted to profit at the expense of our men and women in uniform and the taxpayers at home who support them.”