Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Microsoft And News Corp. Both Under Investigation For Bribery Of Overseas Officials

First News Corp. and the Wall Street Journal was investigated for allegedly bribing Chinese officials.

Now Microsoft is under similar investigation:

SEATTLE — Federal authorities are examining Microsoft’s involvement with companies and individuals that are accused of paying bribes to overseas government officials in exchange for business, according to a person briefed on the inquiry.

 The Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission have both opened preliminary investigations into bribery accusations involving Microsoft in China, Italy and Romania, according to the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the inquiry is a confidential legal matter. 

Microsoft’s practices in those countries are being looked at for potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, a federal law passed in 1977 that prohibits American companies from making payments to government officials and others overseas to further their business interests.


Microsoft joins a list of about 100 other companies under investigation at present related to violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, according to Mike Koehler, a professor at the Southern Illinois University School of Law and the author of a blog, FCPA Professor, about the anticorruption law. Because companies have such a strong incentive to settle cases of this sort, they rarely end up going to trial. 

Fines in these corruption cases can run into the tens of millions of dollars. In 2008, Siemens, the German engineering conglomerate, signed an $800 million settlement with the Justice Department and the S.E.C. to end an investigation into accusations related to the law.

So glad that NY State is going to hand over confidential data and information about children to these companies.

I'm sure they'll only do upstanding things with that data and info.

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