The United States (US) Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has announced that Ellman International Inc (Ellman) has agreed to pay US$191,700 to settle apparent breaches of the Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations (the Regulations). According to OFAC, between 2005 and 2008 and under its previous ownership and management, Ellman sold and exported medical equipment to Iran and engaged the services of a physician in Iran, in breach of the Regulations. The value of the transactions totalled US$317,211.
United States (US) Attorney for the Southern District of New York Preet Bharara has announced that Switzerland's oldest private bank, Wegelin & Co (Wegelin), has pleaded guilty to conspiracy to evade taxes. Wegelin is alleged to have conspired with US taxpayers to hide over US$1.2 billion in secret Swiss bank accounts from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). According to Mr Bharara, Wegelin has agreed to pay approximately US$20 million in restitution to the IRS, a fine of US$22.05 million and the civil forfeiture of US$15.8 million, in addition to the US$16.2 million forfeiture agreed in April 2012.
The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced that it has barred Filiquarian Publishing LLC (Filiquarian), Choice Level LLC, and their chief executive officer, Joshua Linsk, from "furnishing a consumer report to anyone they do not have reason to believe has a 'permissible purpose' to use the report, [for] failing to take reasonable steps to ensure the maximum possible accuracy of the information conveyed in its reports, and [for] failing to provide users of its reports with information about their obligations under the [Federal Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)]".
Two days after it was announced that Avis would be acquiring Zipcar for $500 million, Zipcar’s chief executive Scott Griffith appeared on CNBC to announce the sale and then posted a message regarding the sales on Twitter. By the end of that day, Zipcar’s legal team had made a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) disclosing the tweet to investors. The filing also mentioned Griffith’s appearance on CNBC and attached a copy of the transcript of the appearance. Zipcar’s filing came about a month after the SEC informed Netflix that it was considering taking action against the company for a Facebook post by the company’s CEO, Reed Hastings.
Ten mortgage service providers, namely Bank of America Corp, Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase and Co, Wells Fargo and Co, MetLife Bank, Aurora, PNC, Sovereign, SunTrust and US Bank, have agreed to pay a total of US$8.5 billion to settle allegations that they improperly foreclosed on homeowners, while acknowledging that the program to review the foreclosures "had proved too cumbersome and expensive". Affected borrowers will reportedly receive cash compensation of up to US$125,000, depending on the type of errors they experienced during the alleged foreclosure malpractice
The United States (US) Department of Labor (DoL) has announced that Mahaffey Tent and Awning Co (trading as Mahaffey Fabric Structures) (Mahaffey) has paid US$133,285 in back wages and fringe benefits to 28 current and former workers after an investigation by the DoL's Wage and Hour Division "found that [Mahaffey] violated the requirements of the McNamara-O'Hara Service Contract Act and the Contract Work Hours and Safety Standards Act".
The United States (US) Department of Labor (DoL) has announced that Peyton's Place in Duncan, Oklahoma, has agreed to pay US$84,864 in back wages to 31 current and former servers after a DoL investigation discovered violations of the minimum wage and record-keeping provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.
The United States (US) Department of Justice (DoJ) has announced that Transocean Deepwater Inc has agreed to pay US$1 billion in civil penalties and US$400 million in criminal fines and to plead guilty to violating the Clean Water Act for its conduct in relation to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a "three-month-long oil spill at the Macondo Well and the Transocean drilling rig Deepwater Horizon" which occurred in 2010. According to the DoJ, Transocean Deepwater Inc has acknowledged "that members of its crew onboard the Deepwater Horizon … were negligent in failing fully to investigate clear indications that the Macondo well was not secure and that oil and gas were flowing into the well".
The United States (US) Department of Justice (DoJ) has announced that American Sleep Medicine LLC (American Sleep) has agreed to pay over US$15.3 million following allegations that it improperly billed Medicare, TRICARE and the Railroad Retirement Medicare Program. According to the DoJ, American Sleep, which owns and operates diagnostic sleep testing centres nationwide, billed the healthcare programs between 1 January 2004 and 31 December 2011 for services that were not eligible for payment.
The United States (US) Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has announced that national retailers Amazon.com, Leon Max, Macy's, Sears, Roebuck and Co, Kmart Corporation and Kmart.com have agreed to pay a total of US$1.26 million in penalties to resolve FTC charges that they breached the Textile Products Identification Act and the FTC's Textile Rules. According to the FTC, the retailers falsely labelled textiles as made of bamboo, when in fact they were made from rayon.
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