- Ericsson has agreed to pay $206 million to the US government after pleading guilty in a bribery case.
- The company had already paid over $1 billion in 2019 for the same case, but the new fine was applied because it had failed to reveal all the information and evidence involving the case as agreed.
- Ericsson had been involved in bribing government officials and cooking its books in several countries, including China, Vietnam, Indonesia, Kuwait, and Djibouti.
Giant telecommunications company Ericsson has plead guilty in a bribery case and agreed to pay the sum of $206 million to the US government.
The Swedish telco settled the violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act on Thursday, according to a press release from the department of justice. Already, the company had paid over one billion dollars in 2019 over the same case.
The new fine was applied because Ericsson had failed to reveal all the information and evidence involving the case, as was part of the terms of agreement it reached with the government prosecutors about four years ago.
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A CNBC coverage of the event mentioned that the company was involved in bribing government officials and cooking its books in Djibouti, China, Vietnam, Indonesia and Kuwait. It also engaged in similar actions in Iraq, according to journalists, including making a deal with ISIS to operate in terrorist controlled regions. However, the company denies this later part and it was not included in the government prosecutors’ statement.
Ericsson was able to get away with its scheming for so long by using outside consultants as conduits for the bribes through fake contracts and invoices.
In China for example, government officials were treated to leisure travels and entertainment while Djibouti government officials received cash bribes. The bribery also extended to foreign employees of state-owned telecommunications companies.
Ericsson CEO Börje Ekholm, who took over the company in 2017, commented on the recent settlement, saying that it concludes the case finally.
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