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Construction Company to Pay $20 Million Settlement in One World Trade Center Overtime Scam

One of the construction companies involved in building One World Trade Center has struck a deal with federal prosecutors to pay out $20 million after an alleged overbilling scheme was uncovered.

The government accused Tishman Construction, a unit of Aecom, of improperly billing clients on projects including One World Trade Center as well as the Plaza Hotel in New York. Tishman overbilled clients by fraudulently adding one to two hours of unworked or unnecessary "guaranteed" overtime pay per day to time sheets for labor foremen, according to prosecutors.

Reuters reported the details:

“Through a systemic practice, Tishman Construction bilked its clients by charging them for unworked time and at rates higher than those bargained for by their clients," Brooklyn U.S. Attorney Robert Capers said in a statement.

John Gallagher, a spokesman for Tishman, said the company fully cooperated with the investigation.

The settlement, reported by Reuters, follows similar accords with construction companies in recent years over alleged fraudulent billing practices on projects in New York City.

Lend Lease Construction in 2012 agreed to pay $56 million in fines and restitution as part of a deferred prosecution deal over claims it engaged in a 10-year overbilling scheme.

More recently, Hunter Roberts Construction Group agreed to pay $7 million to resolve an investigation into its own past billing practices.