It was announced yesterday that the CEO of Insys Therapeutics Inc., Micheal Babich, pleaded guilty to participating in a nationwide scheme to bribe doctors to prescribe its opioid medication Subsys. Babich resigned as the Arizona-based drugmaker’s CEO in 2015. His guilty plea comes just weeks before Insys founder, and one-time billionaire, John Kapoor goes to trial facing allegations of racketeering conspiracy. Read more
Lawyers Who Represent Whistleblowers
Halunen Law’s False Claims Act attorneys, chaired by Susan Coler, have joined a coalition of lawyers who represent whistleblowers, along with United States Attorneys, academics, and public interest groups, in sending a letter to U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley. Asked him to ensure that Attorney General nominee William Barr is affirmed only if he expressly commits himself to honor past Supreme Court precedent and protecting the False Claims Act as a critically important tool to combat fraud against the government.
Read recent coverage by Reuters: “Whistleblower lawyers to Grassley: Mike Barr commit to False Claims Cases
Read the letter submitted to Judiciary Committee Chairman Grassley
Clayton Halunen Represents Marilyn Turnbull
Clayton Halunen is representing longtime Tower School “lunch lady” Marilyn Turnbull, in her challenge to the St. Louis County School District and their failure to address her years-long struggle to be compensated as a “cook manager,” a title and pays grade that most closely reflects her actual duties. The 66-year-old Turnbull has been a certified food handler for decades, and the Tower School kitchen is kept open solely on her license.
The case has a personal connection for Halunen. Born and raised in northern Minnesota, he and husband David own a home near Tower on Lake Vermillion, as does Halunen’s mother.
“I look forward to assisting Ms. Turbull on this important matter,”
“We will try to work out an amicable settlement, however, if we fail to reach an agreement we will not hesitate to file a lawsuit to address this injustice.” stated Halunen
Read the full story
Halunen Law, Lockridge Grindal Nauen P.L.L.P., and Levin Sedran & Berman, announced recently that plaintiffs they represented entered into an agreement to settle various class actions relating to IKO roofing shingles. The settlement applies to the “organic” asphalt shingles that were installed on buildings in the United States primarily between 1978 and 2008.
Read the recent press release about this settlement
People who own or owned buildings with IKO organic shingles can obtain additional information about the settlement by checking the website at http://www.ikoorganicroofingshinglesclassactionsettlement.com
KSTP-TV spoke with Halunen Law attorney Charles Moore regarding a recent suit against major airlines. The class action lawsuit was filed against American, Delta, Southwest, and United Airlines, where passengers allege the airlines improperly worked together to limit the number of seats available on domestic flights to drive up ticket prices.
While not directly involved with this case, Halunen Law is recognized for its expertise and is frequently asked by media organizations to comment on legal matters in the news.
View Moore’s recent interview with KSTP reporter Matt Belanger:
Halunen Law attorneys, Susan Coler, Gerald Robinson, and Nathaniel Smith attended the national conference of Taxpayers Against Fraud (TAF), an organization of attorneys who represent whistleblowers in False Claims Act cases across the United States.
During the conference, Halunen Law’s Nathaniel Smith moderated a panel titled “Overcoming Lack of Agency Concern or Action.” Along with Nathaniel, the panel included other experienced qui tam attorneys Lesley Skillen of Getnick & Getnick, Joseph Trautwein, of Joseph Trautwein & Associates, and Colin Huntley, Assistant Director with the Department of Justice. This panel generated vigorous discussion of challenges faced by False Claims Act practitioners in achieving agency support in cases, whether there is deference to agencies in deciding whether to move forward with cases, and ways to maximize the likelihood of agency support in False Claims Act cases. For Nathaniel, one of the key takeaways is that the reasoning in Escobar, a recent Supreme Court case, makes clear that the standard to apply in determining whether a false claim is material to payment continues to be an objective one.
The TAF Conference brings together attorneys who represent whistleblowers, Assistant United States Attorneys from various states, attorneys from the Department of Justice, and representatives of government agencies including VA, HHS, and DoD. The sessions tend to be practical and oriented to sharing strategies for success in cases, government priorities, and analysis of new case law.
Says attorney Susan Coler, “this organization is unusual in the camaraderie and sharing that occurs; we are all focused on helping each of us get good results for our clients and the United States. We look forward to the conference every year as a re-energizing force in our professional lives. ”
As an attorney at Halunen Law, Nathaniel Smith focuses on cases involving fraud against the government through the False Claims Act and retaliation litigation. He represents whistleblowers across the United States in areas including healthcare, pharmaceuticals, small business programs, procurement, and defense contracting. Learn more about Nathaniel Smith. https://www.halunenlaw.com/our-team/nathaniel-f-smith
In the age of the #MeToo movement, many law firms are experiencing an increase in sexual harassment cases. And they are considering changes in how they litigate these cases. On October 17, the Minnesota State Bar Association’s “How #MeToo is Impacting Employment Law Today” panel will discuss how attorneys assess sexual harassment claims, how employers evaluate their liability and exposure in responding to claims, the role of non-disclosure agreements, and much more. Halunen Law employment attorney Emma Denny will share her expertise in this important discussion and will be joined by Antone Melton-Meaux of Work Release Mediation and Sarah Riskin from Nilan Johnson Lewis PA on the panel.
Learn more about this CLE opportunity
Learn more about Halunen Law employment attorney Emma Denny https://www.halunenlaw.com/our-team/emma-r-denny/
Halunen Law recently filed a lawsuit in Hennepin County District Court against Target Corporation alleging failure to address alleged sexual harassment experienced by Eva Biswas who was employed at a Twin Cities Target store. The suit claims a potential promotion was delayed because Biswas turned down unwanted sexual advances by one of her managers, and others in senior positions failed to respond appropriately when told of the allegations.
“We stand firm in defending employee’s rights including the right to work in an environment free of harassment and discrimination,” said Halunen Law employment attorney Emma Denny. “Women like Ms. Biswas – minimum wage employees, immigrants, and women of color – too often have their voices ignored when they report sexual harassment or other workplace misconduct to their employers. We look forward to pursuing justice on behalf of Ms. Biswas.”
Read recent news coverage of this case:
Target sued by an employee who alleges sexual harassment and store management doing little to address it
Target Worker Claims Manager At Fridley Store Sexually Harassed Her, Staff Didn’t Help
Target employee claims sexual harassment, and that management didn’t stop it
A former college dean who says she was blackballed after suing the now-scuttled Globe University may have a second career as a whistleblower advocate. Heidi Weber, who moved to the Twin Cities from South Dakota to become a Globe University dean only to be fired in 2011, was featured on the Aug. 31 episode of CBS-TV’s new series “Whistleblower.”
MINNEAPOLIS, MN (August 24, 2018): Halunen Law is pleased to announce firm founder and managing partner Clayton Halunen, and client Heidi Weber will be featured in the August 31 episode of CBS’ new Whistleblower television series. Weber won a judgment in excess of $1 million in her 2013 civil court case claiming her former employer, Woodbury, Minn.-based Globe University/Minnesota School of Business, wrongfully terminated her. As Dean of the Globe Universities Medical Assistant Program, Weber was let go in April 2011. Weber claimed the for-profit school engaged in consumer fraud by making misleading statements to students about its job placement rates and failing to meet its commitment to place all qualified medical assistant program students in externship programs, according to court records. Rather than address her concerns constructively, Globe University officials chose to silence her by firing her.
Weber’s courage and conviction to blow the whistle on the school’s misleading and illegal practices resulted not only in a significant financial judgment, but garnered the attention of Minnesota’s Attorney General, and brought a national spotlight to the unethical practices embraced by many for-profit colleges. As a result, schools across the region and nation have ceased operation. Clayton Halunen and employment attorney and partner Ross Stadheim were instrumental in achieving the verdict and bringing broader attention to the case.
“We are immensely proud that CBS chose to share Heidi’s compelling, courageous story,” said Halunen. “Heidi epitomizes the guts and determination it takes to blow the whistle. And her case conveys what we so passionately believe; one person seeking justice can have a profound impact on creating meaningful change. We are grateful to host and executive producer Alex Ferrer, producer Caroline Sommers, and the CBS Whistleblower team for their exceptional work conveying Heidi’s difficult but ultimately rewarding journey. I encourage everyone to tune in on August 31.”
About the Whistleblower Series
Whistleblower takes a thrilling look at the real-life David vs. Goliath stories of heroic people who put everything on the line in order to expose illegal and often dangerous wrongdoing when major corporations rip off U.S. taxpayers. Hosted by attorney Alex Ferrer, a former judge, and police officer, each hour introduces cases in which ordinary people step up to do the extraordinary by risking their careers, their families and even their lives to ensure others are not harmed or killed by unchecked, unethical corporate greed. The show airs Fridays on CBS. Streaming is available at https://www.cbs.com/shows/whistleblower/
Photos are available on www.cbspressexpress.com
CBS Twitter: https://twitter.com/
About Halunen Law
With offices in Minneapolis and Chicago, Halunen Law offers experienced legal representation to protect whistleblowers that have experienced retaliation or are planning to blow the whistle. They also offer experienced legal representation to individuals who are blowing the whistle on government fraud under the False Claims Act and other statutes. More information at halunenlaw.com.
WCCO TV – Minneapolis: Whistleblower Hopes Win Over Globe University Inspires Others To Speak Up: https://minnesota.cbslocal.
CBS News coverage of Whistleblower series The Case Against Globe University: https://www.youtube.com/watch?
KELO TV: South Dakota Native Shares “Whistleblower” Story With CBS News: https://www.keloland.com/news/
Phone: (312) 222-0660
Fax: (612) 605-4099
Phone: (602) 535-2203
Fax: (612) 605-4099