Marubeni charged with bribing Indonesian officials
Marubeni Corp., a Japanese trading company involved in the handling of products and provision of services in a range of sectors, including power generation, was sentenced Thursday in the United States for its participation in a scheme to pay bribes to high-ranking Indonesian government officials to secure a lucrative power project, the U.S. Justice Department said.
Marubeni was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Janet B. Arterton in the District of Connecticut.
The company pleaded guilty on March 19 to one count of conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and seven counts of violating the FCPA. Marubeni signed a plea agreement in which it admitted its criminal conduct, agreed to maintain and implement an enhanced global anti-corruption compliance program, cooperate with the department’s ongoing investigation, and agreed to pay an $88 million fine, which the court accepted in imposing the sentence.
The plea agreement cites Marubeni’s refusal to cooperate with the Justice Department’s investigation when given the opportunity to do so, its lack of an effective compliance and ethics program at the time of the offense, and failure to timely remediate as several of the factors considered by the department in determining the resolution.
According to the court filings, Marubeni and its employees, together with others, paid bribes to officials in Indonesia — including a high-ranking member of the Indonesian Parliament and high-ranking members of Perusahaan Listrik Negara, the state-owned electric company — in exchange for help to secure a $118 million contract, known as the Tarahan project. To conceal the bribes, Marubeni and its consortium partner retained two consultants purportedly to provide legitimate consulting services on behalf of the power company and its subsidiaries in connection with the Tarahan project. “The primary purpose for hiring the consultants, however, was to use the consultants to pay bribes to Indonesian officials,” the Justice Department said.
Frederic Pierucci, a current executive at Marubeni’s consortium partner, pleaded guilty on July 29, 2013, to one count of conspiring to violate the FCPA and one count of violating the FCPA. David Rothschild, a former vice president of regional sales at the consortium partner, pleaded guilty on Nov. 2, 2012, to one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA, while Lawrence Hoskins, a former senior vice president for the Asia region for the consortium partner, and William Pomponi, a former vice president of regional sales at the consortium partner, were charged in a second superseding indictment on July 30, 2013.