Lockheed Martin Settlement With Whistleblower
December 3, 2010 - Four years after he first filed his
lawsuit, former Lockheed Martin employee Michael J.
DeKort settled allegations against Lockheed Martin for
an unspecified sum.
The settlement was approved by Court Order in the United
States District Court for the Northern District of Texas
after an agreement in principle was reached only 2 days
before the whistleblower trial was to begin on October
29, 2010, against Integrated Coast Guard Systems,
Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman Ship Systems, Inc.
whistleblower is a person who raises a concern about
alleged wrongdoing occurring in an organization or body
of people. Usually this person would be from that same
organization. The alleged misconduct may be classified
in many ways; for example, a violation of a law, rule,
regulation and/or a direct threat to public interest,
such as fraud, health/safety violations, and corruption.
Whistleblowers may make their allegations internally (for example, to other people within the accused organization) or externally (to regulators, law enforcement agencies, to the media or to groups concerned with the issues). Whistleblowers frequently face reprisal, sometimes at the hands of the organization or group which they have accused, sometimes from related organizations, and sometimes under law.
|Michael J. DeKort, Whistleblower (See YouTube Video)|
pleased with the confidential agreement with Lockheed Martin and
are vigorously pursuing the unsettled claims against Integrated
Coast Guard Systems and Northrop Grumman Ship Systems, Inc. on
behalf of the United States and our client,? says national
whistleblower litigation expert Samuel L. Boyd of Boyd &
Associates, a former U.S. Army Green Beret veteran, who worked
as co-lead counsel with nationally regarded litigator Jim Helmer
of Helmer, Martins, Rice and Popham, Co., L.P.A. of Cincinnati,
Ohio on the case. ?If we win for the
Quoting from part
of the agreed-upon statement, Mr. DeKort of
?I encountered a
number of issues that concerned me. I originally raised the issues
internally. I pursued my complaints through the Inspector General of the
United States Department of Homeland Security. I later assisted Congress
in its investigation of the ?Deepwater? performance problems that were
reported to the House of Representatives? Transportation and
Infrastructure Committee. I worked closely with the Committee?s
Investigator and was the lead witness at the Committee?s April 18, 2007
?In September of
2006, seven months before the Congressional Hearing on Deepwater
problems, I filed the lawsuit that we have settled.
continuing case against the non-settling parties also involves the same
multi-billion dollar Deepwater contract, which was intended to provide
the United States Coast Guard with an improved fleet of boats and
aircraft to protect America after the 9/11 attacks.
In 2005, the Coast
Guard suspended the conversion of the remaining patrol boats for safety
reasons. The United States Coast Guard paid Integrated Coast Guard
Systems $96.1 million for the work converting the first eight 123 foot
boats. On May 17, 2007 the Coast Guard demanded a return of the $96.1
million that it had paid for the eight unseaworthy vessels. In 2007, the
Coast Guard decommissioned the boats, because they were determined to be
unsafe. Coast Guard witnesses have characterized the boats as ?scrap.?
Mr. DeKort filed
his original whistleblower suit in September 2006, and is continuing the
case against ICGS and Northrop Grumman to enable the
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