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The Whistleblower Blog

About This Blog

Presented by Hodgson Russ, the Whistleblower Blog is written by a team of lawyers experienced in successfully guiding both whistleblowers and companies accused by whistleblowers of wrongdoing through the False Claims Act process.

About

As the size of the government has grown and the complexity of its business affairs expanded, whistleblowers have exposed fraud in a multitude of industries, including health care, transportation, defense contracting, pharmaceutical sales, Medicare, Medicaid, construction, and a host of others. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recognizes the important role whistleblowers play in the fight against government fraud and has stepped up its enforcement efforts. Working together, well-informed whistleblowers, their counsel, and the DOJ have, in recent years, recovered billions of dollars in taxpayer money obtained by fraud. And the numbers keep growing—there are more than 1,000 False Claims Act cases currently under consideration by the federal government.

Presented by Hodgson Russ, the Whistleblower Blog is written by a team of lawyers experienced in successfully guiding companies and whistleblowers through the False Claims Act process.

Blog Contributors:

Daniel C. Oliverio, Chairman Emeritus and False Claims Act & Whistleblower Representation Practices Leader

In addition to serving as Hodgson Russ's Chairman Emeritus and leader of firm’s False Claims Act & Whistleblower Representation and Business Crimes, Regulatory Offenses & Corporate Investigations Practices, Dan is a member of the firm’s Business Litigation Practice, placing him among the firm’s leaders in civil and criminal litigation. His current practice includes complex litigation involving high-dollar, high-exposure issues for business clients, primarily before U.S. district courts. He has served as lead trial counsel in numerous commercial and intellectual property cases, as well as white-collar criminal cases involving taxation, fraud, and business crimes. Dan has experience representing relators and defending accused companies in False Claims Act cases arising from a variety of industries and areas, including health care reimbursement, defense procurement, pharmaceuticals, and medical device matters. He led a team of Hodgson Russ attorneys in the successful representation of two of the plaintiffs who blew the whistle on Johnson & Johnson for its off-label marketing of Risperdal, resulting in the largest-ever False Claims Act settlement. Dan is also a former assistant U.S. attorney for the Western District of New York and has served as a special prosecutor appointed by the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York.

Reetuparna (Reena) Dutta

Reena concentrates her practice in business litigation. Her experience includes matters involving white-collar crime and False Claims Act litigation, specifically in the area of health law and health care fraud, as well as matters involving municipal zoning, antitrust, and intellectual property issues. Prior to joining Hodgson Russ, Reena served as an intern at the Civil Appellate Division of the DOJ and at the Office of the Senate Chief Counsel for Employment. She has also worked as a legal and economic research assistant responsible for investigating antitrust implications of mergers and acquisitions at a prominent national law firm.

Patrick Fitzsimmons
Patrick primarily concentrates his practice in the areas of white-collar criminal defense and business litigation.  Prior to rejoining Hodgson Russ, Patrick was an assistant district attorney in the Erie County District Attorney’s Office where he gained extensive trial experience, both jury and non-jury, prosecuting a wide range of criminal matters.  Patrick also has corporate and securities law experience, having worked in the corporate departments of both Hodgson Russ and Ropes & Gray LLP in its New York City office.

Robert J. Fluskey, Jr.

Rob has a broad range of experience in complex litigation and dispute resolution, which includes representing clients before federal courts, state courts, and arbitration panels. He has represented relators in False Claims Act cases as well as corporate defendants in False Claims Act cases and government investigations.

Michelle Merola

Michelle represents corporations, financial institutions, health care providers, and individuals in all aspects of government investigations, internal audits, corporate compliance matters, and civil and criminal litigation. Michelle has experience in various health care statutes, including the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act; the Anti-Kickback Statute; and federal and state False Claims Acts. Specifically, she has represented health care professionals and medical device companies under investigation for submitting false claims. She has also represented hospitals, nursing homes, home health agencies, OMRDD providers, and drug treatment providers in a variety of regulatory and compliance matters. Michelle served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia.

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About This Firm

Hodgson Russ is one of only a few major law firms that represents both whistleblowers and companies accused by whistleblowers of wrongdoing. This unusual perspective means we are exceptionally well positioned to advise whistleblowers about potential claims.

We are not a "whistleblower mill" that pays little attention to the needs of its clients or the factual nuances of complex cases. Rather, we are a team of highly experienced lawyers that selects only the best cases, affording us the time and focus to become fully immersed in the factual and legal details necessary to bring cases to successful resolution.