Pipe from JM Eagle has made news again but this time it's not related to the headline-grabbing whistleblower lawsuit.
JM Eagle and six counties in California have reached a settlement over retail pipe that was shorter than the proper, represented dimensions. JM Eagle, and the Alameda County, Calif., attorney general's office, announced the agreement May 7.
According to Alameda County, the Los Angeles-based company will pay about $1.13 million in restitution, costs and penalties.
The pipe maker also is subject to an injunction to ensure accurate pipe-length measurements.
JM Eagle did not admit liability, according to the company and Alameda County.
JM Eagle said the electrical pipe length sold at hardware stores was just a tiny bit off: 0.1-0.35 of an inch on 10-foot sections.
The company, as well as other pipe manufacturers, was producing pipe under the applicable industry standards set forth by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, which allow for a 1-inch pipe-length variation, JM Eagle said in a news release. JM Eagle said it immediately changed its practices after learning about the conflicts with California state law.
The Alameda County attorney general's office said JM Eagle cooperated when informed about the investigation and took immediate steps to remedy the problem.
Meanwhile, JM Eagle wants the whistleblower case dismissed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. The whistleblower, former employee John Hendrix charges the company made substandard PVC water and sewer pipe to boost its profit.
JM Eagle filed a motion to dismiss the suit May 10, calling Hendrix a dishonest and disgruntled former employee who is cobbling together ambiguous details, baseless insinuations and innocent mistakes into an inflammatory fraud complaint.
JM Eagle's motion also states that Hendrix does not identify any pipe JM Eagle sold that actually failed to meet contract requirements, specifications or standards, much less that JM Eagle knowingly sold such pipe to any government customer.
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