Unisys settling radar contract claims

After more than a decade in dispute, Unisys Corp. has agreed to pay the U.S. government $1.43 million to settle claims that it failed to disclose important information to the Air Force while negotiating a radar contract.

The Justice Department said the settlement dates to a 1990 contract Unisys won to build a radar system called the North Warning System. During contract negotiations, the company failed to tell the Air Force that it planned to save money by hiring a subcontractor, ASR Corp., to perform some of the contract's quality-control work.

By failing to disclose its plans to subcontract work, Unisys violated the False Claims Act, Justice leaders said Aug. 2. Unisys officials contend that they did not make a final decision to subcontract work until after the company was awarded the contract.

But Justice rejected that claim. "Contractors who enter into negotiated contracts with the government are required to provide the government with accurate and complete information," said Stuart Schiffer, acting assistant attorney general.

A Unisys spokesman said that after nearly 12 years of haggling, the company "is pleased to finally resolve" the matter. The dispute has dragged on so long that more than half the settlement—$788,000 worth—is interest, he said.

In settling, Unisys did not admit any wrongdoing or liability in the matter and stressed that the contract was the work of a military business unit that Unisys sold in the mid-1990s.

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