Verizon Steals $93.5M From Taxpayers with Fake Surcharges & Taxes

Verizon Communications (VZ) paid the U.S. $93.5 million to resolve allegations the company overcharged the government on invoices dealing with voice and data telecommunications services contracts. The Justice Department said Verizon subsidiary MCI Communications Services charged the General Services Administration (GSA) for a variety of federal, state and local taxes and surcharges in violation of the contracts and applicable regulations. The DOJ's investigation found Verizon and MCI submitted false claims under the contracts for the reimbursement of property taxes, common carrier recovery charges and unallowable surcharges, charges that are not directly reimburseable under the FTS2001 contracts. The lawsuit was not publicly known, until it was revealed as settled on Tuesday. The whistle-blower lawsuit was filed on behalf of the government by Stephen M. Shea and 2Probe LLC, according to the statement. This is the 2nd time this year Verizon has settled with the US government for overcharging fees. Read more from WSJ

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