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CHD Supports the Motion Against US DHHS Alleging Fraud in Omnibus Autism Proceeding

— April 18, 2024

Ultimately, all of the 5,400 OAP claims were dismissed, leaving vaccine-injured children and their families with no recourse.

Washington, D.C. — Children’s Health Defense (CHD) Senior Staff Attorney Rolf Hazlehurst filed a motion in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims alleging that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), representing the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), committed fraud in its representation of HHS in the Omnibus Autism Proceeding (OAP) in the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP). The OAP was established to consolidate and adjudicate the approximately 5,400 claims filed on behalf of children who regressed into autism following vaccination. In 2003, Hazlehurst filed a claim in the program on behalf of his son Yates, diagnosed with autism after suffering adverse reactions following routine childhood vaccines. Hazlehurst’s claim was one of six original “test cases” in 2007 that would decide the fate of all the other claims in the OAP.

According to the newly filed motion, the DOJ attorneys engaged in a series of acts of fraud upon the courts, beginning in the NVICP and ultimately impacting the Supreme Court of the United States. In the NVICP, DOJ attorneys concealed from the special masters and petitioners that the government’s top expert witness, a world-renowned pediatric neurologist, revised his opinion on whether vaccines can cause autism. The expert explained to the DOJ attorneys that vaccines can cause autism in a subset of children. The witness had been scheduled to testify in the first test case in the OAP. However, the DOJ abruptly dismissed him as a witness once they learned of his clarification. Without the witness’s knowledge, DOJ attorneys repeatedly misrepresented his prior case-specific written opinion in the OAP to argue there is no scientific basis that vaccines cause autism. Ultimately, all of the 5,400 OAP claims were dismissed, leaving vaccine-injured children and their families with no recourse.

“The DOJ’s first act of fraud upon the court snowballed into a massive scheme of deception with far-reaching implications. Their fraudulent scheme denied justice to Yates and the thousands of other children in the OAP,” said Hazlehurst. “By hiding that their own expert’s opinion had changed to favor Yates and other children in the OAP, the DOJ effectively closed the NVICP’s doors to the injured children with similar claims who have followed.”

“Watching my child regress into autism due to vaccine injury was horrible for me, my family and our son,” said CHD Executive Vice President Laura Bono. “Learning that his claim in vaccine court was fraudulently dismissed literally added insult to injury. The injustice to the thousands of children in the OAP and those who have been injured since — along with their suffering families — cannot be overstated. Our government needs to finally step up to the plate, tell the truth about what happened to these vaccine-injured children, and dismantle a rogue system that answers to Pharma instead of to the children it’s supposed to protect.”

The National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 (“Vaccine Act”) took away parents’ ability to sue vaccine manufacturers for death or injuries to their children following vaccination. Instead, they must pursue compensation from HHS through the NVICP. Opponents of the compensation program say that it is a one-sided disaster, pitting hard-working and law-abiding parents and their children against a government-adjudicated and well-funded system of attorneys where the children are denied their Seventh Amendment rights of a trial by jury and basic rules of evidence and discovery available in state and federal courts.

“Vaccine makers walk away with billions in profits with no liability for dangerous products, which is bad enough,” said CHD General Counsel Kim Mack Rosenberg. “But today’s motion goes even further, alleging fraud on the part of government lawyers. Instead of seeking the truth and following the path wherever it led, the government marginalized and ignored witnesses in order to push the ‘vaccines don’t cause autism’ narrative.”

Hazlehurst seeks relief from the Court, including challenging the constitutionality of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986 and the validity of the judgment against Yates and the entire OAP. He also asks the Court for further discovery and a hearing.

Children's Health Defense logo, courtesy of CHD.
Children’s Health Defense logo, courtesy of CHD.

About Children’s Health Defense

Children’s Health Defense® is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Our mission is to end childhood health epidemics by working aggressively to eliminate harmful exposures, hold those responsible accountable and establish safeguards to prevent future harm. We fight corruption, mass surveillance and censorship that put profits before people as well as advocate for worldwide rights to health freedom and bodily autonomy.

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