The US government has joined a lawsuit alleging that the UK-headquartered marine services contractor Inchcape Shipping Services and certain of its subsidiaries violated the country’s False Claims Act by knowingly overbilling the U.S. Navy for ship husbanding services from years 2005 to 2014.
The lawsuit, unsealed on November 18, alleges that Inchcape knowingly overbilled the US Navy by submitting invoices that overstated the quantity of goods and services provided, billed at rates in excess of applicable contract rates and double-billed for certain goods and services.
As a ship husbanding services provider, Inchcape arranged for the provision of goods and services to US Navy ships at ports in several regions throughout the world, including southwest Asia, Africa, Panama, North America, South America and Mexico.
Inchcape’s services typically included the provision of food and other subsistence items, arrangement of local transportation, waste removal, telephone services, ship-to-shore transportation and force protection services.
The lawsuit was brought under the qui tam, or whistleblower, provisions of the False Claims Act by three former employees of Inchcape, Noah Rudolph, Andrea Ford and Lawrence Cosgriff.