Bank of America whistleblower to win big


Bank of America has proven to be quite a gift for internal whistleblowers.

Under the False Claims Act, they have alleged criminal activity by the bank in court, and in some cases, the government has joined the suit, with the whistleblowers receiving a generous cut of settlements. A group of six whistleblowers, for example, collected $46.5 million when the nation's top mortgage originators and lenders settled charges with the states, agreeing to pay $5 billion in fines and roughly $20 billion more for mortgage modifications.

The latest potential winner has proven to be a reclusive one, so far anyway. According to court records, Edward O'Donnell, of Pennsylvania resident and former executive vice president at Countrywide Home Loans who had worked at the mortgage company between 2003 and 2009 filed a suit under the False Claims Act in February. It was later joined by the United States.

The suit seeks triple damages under the act as well as civil penalties. The grand total is $1 billion. The U.S. Attorney's allegations go much farther than O'Donnell's initial suit, "which suggests that the government has been busily investigating in the months since O'Donnell initiated the case," notes Thomson Reuters New & Insights.

So far, he has stayed out of the media, but he is clearly in line for a massive payday if this case settles, which I fully expect.

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