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W.W. Grainger to Pay U.S. $70 Million for False Claims

The Lake Forest-based hardware supply distributer has agreed to pay $70 million to resolve U.S. allegations it submitted false claims

W.W. Granger Inc., a hardware supply distributer based in Lake Forest, has agreed to pay $70 millon to resolve allegations that it submitted false claims under contracts with the General Services Administration (GSA) and the U.S. Postal Service, Bloomberg News reported Wednesday. The GSA performed an audit that W.W. Granger Inc. hadn't given "accurate or complete information to government purchasers," which caused the U.S. to pay excessive amounts for the company products.

In a statement to NASDAQ on Wednesday, Grainger maintained that the company complied with the disclosure requirements and contracts, and that the settlement doesn't contain any admission of wrongdoing by the company. 

“Misrepresentations during contract negotiations undermine the integrity of the government procurement process,” said Stuart F. Delery, who heads the Justice Department’s Civil Division, said in a statement to Bloomberg News. “The Justice Department is committed to ensuring that government purchasers of commercial products receive the prices to which they are entitled.”

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