Foreign companies plead guilty to defrauding US military in Afghanistan food service contract

IndustrialsAssociated Press

Several foreign companies have pleaded guilty to fraud and conspiracy for overcharging the U.S. military in connection with a contract to provide food and water to troops in Afghanistan.

Court documents say the privately held firms fraudulently inflated the price of fresh fruits and vegetables and bottled water, overcharging the government by $48 million between 2005 and 2009.

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The companies agreed to pay $288 million in fines and restitution, plus $101 million to resolve a whistleblower suit.

The case involves Supreme Group B.V., a privately held Dutch corporation, and its subsidiaries, Supreme Foodservice GmbH of Switzerland and Supreme Foodservice FZE of United Arab Emirates.

The U.S. attorney's office in Philadelphia announced the resolution of the case on Monday.