HP Settles False Claims, Kickback Charges for $55 Million

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Not long ago, Apple was in the headlines after a former manager was indicted for receiving kickbacks from suppliers in Asia in exchange for information that would help them land contracts with the Cupertino, Calif.-based company. Now it's HP's turn for a kickback scandal.


As if the company and its board of directors haven't had enough on their plates right now with the aftermath of former CEO Mark Hurd's forced departure, The Washington Post reported Tuesday that HP has reached a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice resolving charges of false billing and receiving kickbacks in relation to a U.S. General Services Administration contract.


The company will pay a $55 million fine, but as is typical in these settlements, does not admit to breaking the law. An HP spokesperson quoted in the piece said, in part, "We believe it is in the best interest of our stakeholders to resolve the matter and move beyond this issue."


The settlement also reportedly involved a lawsuit filed by a whistleblower pursuant to the False Claims Act.


On the one hand, I'm sure the stakeholders are shaking their heads about yet more bad news from the PC maker, but at least it's not news about Mark Hurd.