Edison company agrees to pay $1.02 million to US for making alleged false statements


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NEWARK – An Edison company has agreed to pay $1.02 million to the United States for allegedly making false statements to avoid paying customs duties, according to U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger.

According to the admissions and contentions of the U.S. in the settlement agreement:

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Eos Energy Storage LLC (Eos) is a publicly traded company headquartered in Edison that designs and sells industrial batteries to power companies and other commercial enterprises. From July 8, 2018 to June 7, 2019, Eos purchased components for its batteries from third parties in the U.S. and elsewhere, and then provided those components to a foreign manufacturer to be included in the assembly of batteries that Eos imported into the U.S. Once the batteries were assembled, Eos imported them into the U.S., according to the U.S. Attorney District of New Jersey.

When Eos imported the assembled batteries into the U.S., the company should have declared to U.S. Customs the value of the components that it provided to the foreign manufacturer. Eos allegedly failed to declare the value of those components to U.S. Customs. Eos also allegedly failed to declare transportation and packing costs that should have been declared. In the settlement agreement, Eos admitted that as the importer of record, it was obligated to declare the value of the components, as well as the transportation and packing costs, but failed to do so on more than 60 occasions. Under the settlement agreement, Eos will pay $1.02 million to the U.S. pursuant to the False Claims Act, according to the U.S. Attorney District of New Jersey.

The settlement with Eos resolves a lawsuit filed under the whistleblower provision of the False Claims Act, which permits private parties, called relators, to file suit on behalf of the U.S. for false claims and share in a portion of the government’s recovery, according to the U.S. Attorney District of New Jersey.

The relator will receive 20% of the settlement amount recovered by the U.S. pursuant to the False Claims Act, according to the settlement.

Sellinger credited special agents with the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jason J. Molina in Newark, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations under the direction of Director Francis Russo in New York, with the investigation leading to the settlement.

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