David K. Colapinto is a nationally recognized advocate for whistleblowers specializing in Qui Tam False Claims Act cases and whistleblower reward claims before the SEC, CFTC, and IRS. For more than 30 years he has successfully representing many whistleblowers in state and federal courts and before numerous agencies.
Among his many accomplishments, Mr. Colapinto was lead counsel for one of the whistleblowers in a major qui tam/False Claims action against the drug maker Bristol-Myers Squibb, helping to recover more than $500 million for U.S. taxpayers and the government, and he was co-counsel for Bradley Birkenfeld helping to recover the largest ever tax whistleblower award ($104 million) for Mr. Birkenfeld in 2012. He has also successfully handled many other qui tam cases under the False Claims Act and other whistleblower award laws resulting in millions of dollars in recoveries for taxpayers and whistleblowers.
Mr. Colapinto also helped secure whistleblower protections for FBI and Intelligence Community employees. For example, he successfully represented Dr. Fredric Whitehurst, the FBI lab forensics expert who suffered retaliation after reporting serious misconduct and poor lab practices at the FBI. As a result of the Whitehurst v. FBI case, President Clinton ordered the Attorney General to implement the FBI whistleblower statute, but after the Attorney General failed to issue regulations Mr. Colapinto sued the Department of Justice on behalf of other FBI employees to secure their whistleblower rights.
He has also established important precedent under the Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act. For example, Mr. Colapinto served as co-counsel in Linda Tripp’s successful lawsuit citing Privacy Act violations by the Department of Defense regarding the unauthorized leak of information from Ms. Tripp’s security clearance file following her testimony to the Independent Counsel. In another case, the D.C. Circuit ruled in favor of a different client granting the request for expedited processing under FOIA.
Mr. Colapinto is a co-founder of the National Whistleblower Center where he serves as General Counsel in a pro bono capacity, and a Trustee of the National Whistleblower Legal Defense & Education Fund.