The opinion of the court was delivered by: John A. Mendez United States District Judge
BENJAMIN B. WAGNER United States Attorney KURT A. DIDIER Assistant United States Attorney 501 I Street, Suite 10-100 Sacramento, California 95814 Telephone: (916) 554-2700 Attorneys for the Plaintiff United States of America
SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT AND ORDER
1. Plaintiff, United States of America, and defendant Gregory P. Torlai (Defendant) hereby agree to resolve the United States' civil complaint for fraud and unjust enrichment as set forth below (the Agreement). The complaint arises from Defendant's submission of false claims for crop insurance payments. The Agreement is based upon the following facts:
2.. This is an action to recover treble damages and penalties pursuant to the False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729 et seq. (the FCA) and for unjust enrichment.
3. The United States alleges that in calendar years 2001, Torlai made false statements to the USDA in connection with crop insurance claims concerning his farming operations at Stoney Creek Ranch, Torlai Farms and RBT Farms. The United States further alleges that in calendar years 2002 and 2005, Torlai made false statements to the USDA in connection with crop insurance claims concerning his farming operations at Stoney Creek Ranch. The above conduct will be referred to herein as "the Covered Conduct ".
4. As a result of Defendant's false claims, the United States paid compensation to which he is not entitled. The complaint seeks the recovery of three times the amount of this loss and penalties as authorized by the FCA.
5. The United States and Defendant agree to settle this litigation upon the following terms:
6. Service of Process. Defendant has accepted service of the summons and complaint via personal service.
7. Entry of Judgment. Defendant consents to entry of judgment in the amount of $500,000, representing damages, penalties and costs authorized pursuant to 31 U.S.C. §§ 3729(a)(1) - 3729(a)(3). Defendant further agrees that interest on the judgment shall accrue at 5% until the judgment is satisfied. The judgment amount, however, is reduced to $400,000, at 5% interest per annum, provided Defendant does not default under the provisions of the parties' repayment plan outlined below.
8. Repayment Plan. Defendant shall make an initial payment of $25,000 on or before July 8, 2011 pursuant to written wire-transfer instructions to be provided by the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of California. Thereafter, Defendant shall follow the below payment schedule:
There is no prepayment penalty. Upon Defendant's compliance with these settlement terms, the United States will file a satisfaction of judgment with the Court.
9. Default. Defendant shall be in default if he fails to make a timely payment and thereafter fails to cure the default within ten days from the date the United States mails written notice of the deficiency to Defendant at the address stated in paragraph E, below. The United States may also declare Defendant's default as provided in paragraph F, below. If Defendant fails to cure his default, the judgment shall revert to $500,000, plus 5% interest compounded annually from the date judgment was entered, less any previous payments received. No further notice is required. Upon Defendant's failure to cure his default, the United States may declare any unpaid balance immediately due and owing and proceed with collection efforts against Defendant.
10. Written Notice. Whenever written notice is required, the notice shall be addressed and mailed to the individuals identified below, unless those individuals or their successors give notice of a change to the other parties in writing.