The US Department of Justice (DOJ) says British Airways and Iberia have agreed to pay USD5.8 million to resolve their liability under the False Claims Act for falsely reporting the times they transferred possession of United States mail to foreign postal administrations, or other intended recipients, under contracts with the United States Postal Service (USPS). 

According to a statement, the USPS contracted the two IAG International Airlines Group carriers to haul United States mail from six locations across the US or from various Department of Defense and State Department locations abroad, and then deliver it to numerous international and domestic destinations. To secure payment, the airlines were required to submit electronic scans of the mail receptacles to USPS reporting the time the mail was delivered at the specified destinations. 

Following allegations of misconduct on the airlines' behalf, the USPS subsequently enlisted the Civil Division’s Commercial Litigation Branch, the USPS Office of the Inspector General, and the USPS Office of General Counsel to over see the case.

"The Office of Inspector General supports the Postal Service by aggressively investigating allegations of misconduct within the contract mail delivery process; in this case the falsification of delivery information," Steven Stuller, Acting Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, said. "We worked hand-in-hand with the Department of Justice's Civil Division to help ensure a reasonable resolution and to hold those parties accountable for their actions. We applaud the exceptional work by the investigative and legal team and know it will have a positive impact on Postal Service operations."

The DOJ said this settlement resolves allegations that scans submitted by BA and Iberia falsely reported the time the airlines transferred possession of the mail. The claims also imply no determination of liability.