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The International Fight Against Bribery

Use the map to examine the world's biggest corruption cases and the prosecutors who try them

March 13, 2009BY Siri Schubert and Matthew Vree
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Transparency International: OECD Progress Report Transparency International, a global coalition working to combat international corruption, produced this report on the progress of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development's Anti-Bribery Convention. The convention, adopted in 1997 and ratified by 37 countries, is described as "a collective commitment by the governments of the leading industrialized states to ban foreign bribery." The report itself examines OECD enforcement worldwide, including which countries are the best and worst at adhering to the convention. Shearman & Sterling LLP: FCPA Digest (PDF) The law firm Shearman and Sterling compiled this extensive digest of all cases related to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (as of February 2008), including more than 200 entries in the categories of competed cases, ongoing investigations and parallel litigation. They also provide an introductory analysis of the recent trends in FCPA prosecution, particularly the more aggressive enforcement and larger penalties that have led to greater internal monitoring and voluntary disclosures by companies.
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REACTIONS

Rudra Rudra - Spain, Sildenafil citrate 4tab
Hi guys. Incredible site.

Burton Poole - calais, maine
I suppose all the money paid in fines was used to bribe the news media not to report on it..

kismet doo - NY, NY
I do applaud the altruistic efforts of people who fight corruption but let's get honest here. Even if a company is found guilty, there is no jail time, and the fines are a meager percentage of the value of the contract the bribe got. So basically, the company thinks of that as a tax, and add that to the bribe column, and still make a hefty profit. Why do you think companies continue to bribe? The only real effective way to stop corruption is to enforce harsh and severe penalties including jail time. This will never happen because this will disrupt "business as usual"
that ALL MULTINATIONAL companies and GOVERNMENTS take part in (Americans need not to look further than congress to see where how much lobbying money goes into coffers). There really are a different sets of laws for the ruling elite and for everyone else. This will NEVER change. Power corrupts, period.

(anonymous)
Draft. Without malice. I am a native citizen of Canada. I worked for the federal Government of Canada when B. M. was Prime Minister.
One of the first major things I remember that I was asked me to do, as well as others , may I say without malice, was to get the credit card for a
particular foreign bank's company? I found that so puzzling? And I do remember what I was told about why? Later we heard that the bank got given special privileges? This kind of activity left trails to this day I would think?
So many of us have heard about Airbus and wondered where did the money go?
Why did the current Prime Minister not order that the trail, what was left of it be followed? Where did the money go? Ah questions that some would prefer not be deal with to see the whole truth, justice and closure? So suspect activity covers a large part of the globe and is far more damaging than some would have us believe? Is that what some would have us believe free trade is all about? I believe in goodwill and merit but please I detest being asked to do things that people would suspect! A concerned Canadian who is
fed up with how some do what they have done!

(anonymous)
Excellent episode ... but it felt like that a lot more companies and countries should have been mentioned...the Halliburton and Kuwait contracts for the on-going Iraq adventure and Dassault and Augusta (French defense contractors) and the late Benzair Bhutto and Asif Zardari, her husband, who is unfortunately the current president of Pakistan to name just two.I eagerly await a follow-up to this report ... it should also touch on corruption within the Federal and State governments because that was the fascinating 10 ton elephant in the room that was not touched upon in this episode.P.S. The New York Times did and excellent investigation into the Bhutto/Zardari pay-offs, here's the link to that story:http://www.nytimes.com/1998/01/09/world/house-graft-tracing-bhutto-millions-special-report-bhutto-clan-leaves-trail.html

Jason Prescott - Edmonton, Canada
A lot of the cases outlined are pretty blatant. Whistleblower protection and even compensation should be reinforced to allow for more to bravely step forward. It also seems that there is little, if not no reprcussion for those that are on the receiving end of a bribe. I don't see any prison terms in the report either which doesn't seem fair. I like how this documentary has brought attention to this corruption and look forward to any follow ups.

Dyer, Indiana, USA
As a man of West African descent who has managed to keep very close ties with my roots, my reaction is that of outrage at some of the posted reactions. We are insincere. We glorify mediocrity, shun excellence and complain about everything. Yet some of us who find ourselves in a position to right those things we so well criticize become victims of our own subconscious ego. I know of a late renowned Nigerian activist/professor who was silenced by a military dictator after he was offered a token chairmanship. What a joke! Everybody has a price. The white man facilitated our behaviors: lack of principled leadership and a loss of our sense of pride that has emanated from a culture of decadence has been our biggest undoing. Let us look at how we can make ourselves better people first. Nigeria lost that opportunity when Buhari/Idiagbon lost out to the corrupt generals. Stop the finger pointing. I love my people, I am proud to be African.

Lynn Farley - Springfield, MA
There have to be more U.S. actors in international bribery. I hope that Frontline will probe U.S. complicity more thoroughly in future. Now I understand why Bandar suddenly resigned his position and flew back to Saudi Arabia. Hearing Louis Freeh defend Bandar made me sick. And it's important to note that KBR is still doing black money business with the Pentagon and internationally.

Alhaj Sa'eed Ibrahim - San Francisco, US
Dear FRONTLINE. Accountability,transparency and and rule of law are lofty Western ideals that have no bearing whatsoever when it comes to Third World countries, particularly in Africa for nation-states like Nigeria.
I only wish the West will stop pontificating about "democracy" when creating a middle class is all but an illusion in Africa; no middle class,no democracy. Poverty and corruption are two faces of a coin -- the ruling elites and monarchs of the Third World pocket the golden coins and the masses are crushed under abject poverty. I will, however, second Ambassador Bandar's opinion, out of $400 billion, Saudi Arabia, could showcase $350 billion in development. That can't be said of Nigeria or South Africa.

Boe Beauchamp - Montreal, Canada
The international court really ought to impose, on top of severe fines, severe prison sentences for these crimes which enslave all of us.Thank you for reporting what so many of us have long suspected.

(anonymous)
Fantastic. Looks like the documentary's coming together extremely well, and I'm very much looking forward to watching the whole thing when aired.Best,
Nizar

Yakubu Ibrahim - Berlin, Germany
The countries of Europe should realise that one of the major causes of illegal immigration from Africa and the near East has to do with the wanton level of corruption that is readily visible and affects the socio-economic development of those countries. For as long as the West turns a blind eye on this reality then they will continue to face this problem of unwanted visitors at their door step especially now that the world has become flat and news of good standard of living at one end of the world is recieved at the other end of the world with the speed of light. The unfortunate part of it all for Europe is that, the worst of the populations of these countries will be the one that will take the venture of travelling in order to get a better quality of life. Unfortunately, most of the people that will leave Africa for Europe have been robbed by the corrupt practices of same European multinationals.

 

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