• Switzerland's news in English

US fines Swiss oil patch firm for corruption

AFP · 27 Nov 2013, 09:47

Published: 27 Nov 2013 09:47 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Weatherford and its US subsidiaries falsified its accounts to hide bribes paid to win business in Africa and the Middle East and its violations of US sanctions and export controls.
Three subsidiaries of Weatherford agreed to plead guilty to anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and export controls violations under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, the Justice Department said in a statement.
"Weatherford International and its subsidiaries have also agreed to pay more than $252 million in penalties and fines," the department said.
According to the Treasury Department, Weatherford exported $23 million in goods, technology and services to Iran from 2003 to 2007.
From 2005 to 2008, the company had extensive business with Cuba, totaling $69 million. And from 2005 to 2006, Weatherford did about $295,000 in business with Sudan.
The Treasury said that Weatherford, as part of a combined $100 million settlement with several federal government partners, had agreed to pay $91 million to settle the apparent violations, noting it was the largest-ever settlement outside of the banking industry for sanctions violations.
Weatherford will also pay a $87.2 million criminal penalty to the Justice Department and $65.6 million to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The SEC noted the fine included a penalty for lack of cooperation early in the investigation.
The rest of the fines will be shared by the Commerce Department and the US attorney general's office in Texas, where the company has substantial operations.
"Although Weatherford's extensive remediation and its efforts to improve its compliance functions are positive signs, the corrupt conduct of Weatherford International's subsidiaries allowed it to earn millions of dollars in illicit profits, for which it is now paying a significant price," said Mythili Raman, acting assistant attorney general of the Justice Department's criminal division.
Weatherford said it had previously accrued $253 million to resolve the cases.
"This matter is now behind us. We move forward fully committed to a sustainable culture of compliance," Bernard Duroc-Danner, chairman, president and chief executive, said in a statement.
"With the internal policies and controls currently in place, we maintain a best-in-class compliance program and uphold the highest of ethical standards as we provide the industry's leading products and services to our customers worldwide."
The Geneva-based multinational oilfield service company operates in more than 100 countries and employs over 55,000 people worldwide.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Swiss woman wins headscarf court battle
Photo: Jack Guez / AFP file picture

A Swiss court has ruled against a company that fired a longtime employee after she began wearing the Muslim headscarf, marking one of the first such rulings in Switzerland, media reported Sunday.

Montreux throws hat in Olympic rings
Could Montreux host the 2026 Games? Photo: Ivo Scholz/Swiss Tourism

Montreux is to put itself forward as the host city for the 2026 winter Olympics as part of a potential bid by the cantons of Valais and Vaud.

Geneva car share scheme could help reduce city traffic
Catch a Car is aimed at short hops within a city. Photo: Catch a Car

Catch a Car, already in Basel, launches in Geneva next month.

Swiss women will ‘work for free’ for the rest of year
Female employees in Switzerland earn 19.3 percent less than their male colleagues. File photo: Randy Kashka

Switzerland's gender pay gap means from today, Friday October 21st, women in the country will effectively be working for free for the rest of 2016.

Swiss luxury watches stolen in Paris raid
Police outside the Girard-Perregaux watch store on Thursday. Photo: Bertrand Guay/AFP

The 10 Girard-Perregaux watches are worth half a million euros in total.

Brother-in-law arrested over murder of Swiss teacher
The victim worked in a school in Stabio, near the town of Mendrisio. Photo: Oliver Graf

The primary school teacher was found dead in Ticino earlier this week.

Inside Switzerland’s largest nuclear bunker – 40 years on
Designed to house 20,000 people, the bunker was built in and over two motorway tunnels. Photo: Unterirdisch Ueberleben

The Local takes a tour of the Sonnenberg bunker in Lucerne, opened 40 years ago at the height of the Cold War.

Ten Swiss ski resorts named most expensive in Europe
File photo: Renato Bagattini/Swiss Tourism

Skiers in Switzerland pay the highest prices for their ski passes of anywhere in Europe, according to research.

Eco group fights Bern over wind farm plans
There are currently more than 30 wind farms in Switzerland. Photo: Alpiq

Wind turbines are “gigantic and destructive” machines, says Paysage Libre Suisse.

Vegan wins battle to be accepted by Swiss army
Antoni Da Campo will now carry out his military service. Photo: Antoni Da Campo

A Swiss man who was told he would not be accepted for military service because of his strict veganism has finally succeeded in making the army change its mind.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
Photo: file
Some deodorants could cause breast cancer: Swiss study
Photo: Royal Savoy
In pictures: Inside the latest Swiss luxury hotel
Photo: AFP
Geneva airport bomb hoaxer faces 90,000-franc bill
Photo: Schaffhausen police
Mother leaves toddler son alone in car to go clubbing
Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP
Swiss populist attacked by knife-wielding pensioner
Photo: File
Bern argues over passports for 3rd generation foreigners
Photo: Broad Bean Media
Muslim pupils must shake hands – ‘no ifs and buts’
jobs available