Hansen Building Materials has agreed to pay the state of California $42.2 million to settle allegations that the company stole 2 million cubic feet of sand. It was then sold to construction companies to make concrete and cement.
The whistleblower who originated the suit will receive $10 million for his efforts, according to a December 12, 2007 report in the San Francisco Chronicle.
This is the second-largest recovery in a suit brought under the state’s False Claims Act.
Hansen had taken over sand-dredging leases from other companies. The leases required the companies to pay royalties based on the sale price. The whistleblower, a tug boat captain who pulled sand-filled barges for Hansen, alleged that the company took sand from areas where it did not hold leases and under-reported its sales to the state.