BAE Systems to pay $400 million fine, plead guilty in conspiracy

 @ibtimes
on February 05 2010 4:52 PM

BAE Systems Plc, the largest European defense contractor, said on Friday it will pay a $400 million fine to the U.S. government and plead guilty to a criminal charge as part of a settlement to end a more than two year investigation.

Since 2007, The U.S. Department of Justice had been investigating the company's compliance with anti-corruption laws, including the company's business with Saudi Arabia. In 2006, citing national security, the U.K. dropped an anti-corruption probe of BAE Systems' dealings with Gulf nation.

BAE said today it would plead guilty to a charge that it conspired to make false statements to the U.S. government in connection with certain regulatory filings and undertakings.

BAE failed to honor a commitment in 2000 to comply with U.S. rules within a certain period while also failing to disclose its shortcomings, BAE Chairman Dick Olver said today. The company also made additional commitments concerning its ongoing compliance with laws.

Under a second agreement announced today with the U.K. Serious Fraud Office BAE said it will plead guilty to one charge of breach of duty to keep accounting records in relation to payments made to a former marketing adviser in Tanzania. The company will also pay an agreed penalty of 30 million pounds.

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