US judge fines HP $59 mn for bribing Russian officials
A judge on Thursday ordered US computer giant Hewlett-Packard to pay $58.8 million for bribing Russian government officials to win a big-money contract with the prosecutor general's office in that nation.
Northern California US District Judge Lowell Jensen hit HP with the fine after the company pleaded guilty to violating anti-bribery and accounting provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the US Department of Justice said in a release.
According to a negotiated plea bargain, executives in an HP Russia subsidiary created a multi-million-dollar slush fund, from which money was used to bribe Russian officials who awarded the company a $45 million (35 million euro) contract with the Office of the Prosecutor General of Russia.
"Hewlett Packard's Russia subsidiary used millions of dollars in bribes from a secret slush fund to secure a lucrative government contract," principal deputy assistant attorney general Marshall Miller of the Justice Department's Criminal Division said in a release.
"Even more troubling was that the government contract up for sale was with Russia's top prosecutor's office," he said.
© 2014 AFP