$559 Million Worth of Bribery

Halliburton was caught bribing foreign officials for business, and now is trying to settle with the US government rather than see several of its executives go to jail.

Commentary By: Steven Reynolds

The offer of a fine as a settlement of the bribery and corruption charges has not been accepted as yet. Of course, such massive bribery can only come from the company that gave us Dick Cheney. Halliburton. Better Living Through Corruption, Oil and War.

From Reuters:

Halliburton Co will pay a $559 million fine to end an investigation of its former KBR Inc unit if the U.S. government approves the settlement, the largest penalty against a U.S. company for charges of bribery under federal law.

Halliburton, once headed by former Vice President Dick Cheney, said it was awaiting final approval from the U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission to settle claims that KBR violated anti-bribery laws by paying kickbacks to Nigerian officials.

Under the settlement, Halliburton would pay $382 million to the Department of Justice and $177 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission in “disgorgement.”

KBR did not comment on the proposed settlement. Halliburton said in regulatory filings last July that it was in settlement talks with the government.

Dan Newcomb, a partner at law firm Shearman and Sterling in New York who specializes in Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) law, said it was likely more companies involved in anti-corruption cases would settle with the U.S. government.

Under the FCPA, it is illegal for U.S. companies or their agents to use bribes to win foreign business.

I suppose nobody expects this settlement will make Halliburton a fine corporate citizen.

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009 by Steven Reynolds |

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