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Sprint to Pay Feds $15.5M for Wiretap Overcharges

SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - Sprint has agreed to pay $15.5 million to settle allegations that it overcharged law enforcement agencies for court-ordered wiretaps, the Justice Department said Thursday.

A joint investigation by the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Justice Department's inspector general found that between 2007 and 2010, Sprint tacked on costs of upgrading its system in its bills to law enforcement agencies for wiretaps and other types of interception.

The Federal Communications Commission expressly prohibited carriers from passing on the costs of their upgrades - improvements ordered by Congress to help the government intercept calls and identify callers - to law enforcement agencies in 2006.

While Sprint admitted no wrongdoing, it agreed to pay $15.5 million to resolve the case, the Justice Department said.

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