A company that formerly provided flight line operations at Vance Air Force Base has agreed to pay $4.2 million in a suit claiming it submitted false billing claims to the Air Force for its services, the Department of Justice announced Friday afternoon.
PAE Applied Technologies LLC, which held contracts at the base until 2016, was alleged to have knowingly submitted false claims to the Air Force for employee wages during federal fiscal years 2009-2014. The suit alleged PAE submitted false claims for wage rates above wage caps set in its contract with the Air Force.
PAE agreed Friday to pay $4.2 million to settle the civil claims, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma Timothy J. Downing announced in a press release Friday.
According to a Department of Justice press release, the suit was filed in federal district court in Oklahoma City by a whistleblower who formerly worked for PAE, under provisions of the False Claims Act, which permit private individuals to sue on behalf of the United States for false claims and to share in the recovery.
In reaching this settlement, PAE did not admit its liability, and the United States did not concede that its claims lack merit, according to the press release.
Prior to December 2014, PAE-Applied Technologies LLC provided services to the Air Force under an Aircraft Maintenance, Airfield Management, Aircrew Life Support and Base Operating Support contract.
Vertex Aerospace took over the contract for flight operations at Vance in December 2014, when the contract previously held exclusively by PAE was split between Vertex and PAE. The Vertex contract at that time had a one-year value of $35.2 million.
PAE’s portion of the contract at that time was $43.5 million to perform all other service functions at Vance, including communications and information technology, housing management, operation and maintenance, space management, grounds and site maintenance, engineering services, environmental management, utilities and energy management, fire protection, supply, transportation, purchasing and community services.
In August 2016. ASRC Federal Communications won a five-year contract for the services previously performed by PAE.