March 27, 2000 Conoco
Conoco has agreed to pay $26 Million Dollars to settle claims asserted in a qui tam action filed by two private relators, J. Benjamin Johnson Jr. and John Martineck. The allegations of the case were that Conoco under-reported the value of oil it produced on Federal and Indian leases, and, consequently, it paid less royalties than what it owed to the government. Federal leases are administered by the Minerals Management Service of the U.S. Department of the Interior. Each month, Conoco is required to report the amount of oil produced and the value of oil produced on Federal and Indian leases. Conoco pays royalties based upon the value of the oil it reports.
As part of the settlement, Mr. Johnson and Mr. Martineck will receive $4.2 Million Dollars for having filed the qui tam case.
See U.S. Dept of Justice Press Release 3/27/00