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Siemens Sparks Tough Anti-Bribery Talk; Action Unclear

Jeremy Woolfe | May 1, 2007

Suddenly, it seems that bribery is not the business practice it used to be in Europe.

Credit the scandal of Siemens AG, the German manufacturing giant whose image has been tarred by possible bribery in its telecommunications department. The drumbeat of bad news around Siemens—which first erupted in November, with police raids and the arrest of high-level executives, and has only expanded since—has stiffened the resolve of institutions across the EU and to clamp down on bribery and corruption by various different measures. Investigation of Siemens has now gone well beyond Germany; prosecutors from Switzerland, Italy and other countries are also involved. These European governments are investigating what could be €400 million improper payments over several years. In addition, the conglomerate has come under investigation by the US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission.

In addition to its alleged bribery case, Siemens also is one of 11 firms... To get the full story, subscribe now.