“The federal government announced its largest construction-related False Claims Act settlement of 2013 earlier this month involving alleged disadvantaged business enterprise fraud by a collection of Ohio-based engineering-related companies.
The U.S. Dept. of Justice says it has reached a settlement with Dayton-based TesTech Inc., TesTech owner Sherif Aziz, Dayton companies CESO Testing Technology Inc., CESO International LLC, and CESO Inc., and their owners, David and Shery Oakes. They have agreed to pay $2.88 million to resolve the fraud allegations.
The allegations were brought with the assistance of a whistleblower, former employee Ryan Parker, who will receive $562,370 of the settlement funds under provisions of the FCA.
The prosecution claimed in its allegations that the defendants created TesTech as a subsidiary to the Oakes’ other testing and engineering businesses, falsely filed paperwork that represented Aziz as owner of TesTech, and received minority-owned business and DBE status in Ohio and other states under false pretenses.”