BUSINESS

SNC-Lavalin Settles African Corruption Case, Will Pay $1.5 Million

10/01/2015 10:56 EDT | Updated 10/01/2016 05:12 EDT
AFP via Getty Images
A view is seen on April 13, 2012 of SNC-Lavalin's headquarters in Montreal, Quebec. Police on Friday raided the headquarters of a Canadian engineering firm with dealings in Moamer Kadhafi's Libya and loosely linked to a failed plot to smuggle the ex-dictator's son into Mexico.The Royal Canadian Mounted Police executed a search warrant and the company is cooperating in the investigation, SNC-Lavalin said in a statement. 'The warrant relates to an investigation of certain individuals who are not or are no longer employed by the company,' it added. An AFP correspondent at the scene said all access to the building at Rene Levesque Boulevard West in downtown Montreal, which also houses a US consulate, was blocked. SNC-Lavalin last month fired its chief executive, Pierre Duhaime, after his 23 years with the company, amid accusations he allowed $56 million in payments to foreign agents for undocumented work. AFP PHOTO/GUILLAUME LAVALLEE (Photo credit should read Guillaume Lavallée/AFP/Getty Images)
MONTREAL — SNC-Lavalin (TSX:SNC) will pay $1.5 million and accept certain conditions to settle a corruption case brought against the company by the African Development Bank Group.

The regional development bank says the settlement resolves allegations, which SNC didn't contest, that former employees of SNC-Lavlain International Inc. ordered illicit payments to public officials to secure two contracts in two African countries.

The development bank said one of the contracts was awarded to SNC in October 2008 to supervise construction of a road and bridge in Mozambique. The other contract was awarded in 2010 to supervise a road upgrade in Uganda.

Neither the SNC nor the AfDB identified the individuals at the centre of the allegations in their statements.

In addition to the monetary penalty, SNC has agreed to meet certain undisclosed conditions for two years and 10 months.

The AfDB acknowledged that SNC co-operated in the investigation and demonstrated a willingness to change its practices.

"The sanctions imposed under the settlement agreement reflect the level of co-operation provided by the company in the investigation of the matter," said Anna Bossman, director of the development bank's anti-corruption department.

"SNC-Lavalin has demonstrated that it has undergone significant changes in the past two years, continuously improving ethics and compliance in its operations under a new management."

A Canadain criminal fraud case against SNC-Lavalin is working its way through the court system.

The RCMP alleges that SNC-Lavalin paid nearly $47.7 million to public officials in Libya between 2001 and 2011 to influence government decisions.

It also charged the company, its construction division and its SNC-Lavalin International subsidiary with one charge each of fraud and one of corruption for allegedly defrauding various Libyan organizations of about $129.8 million.

SNC has said it will plead not guilty and that the charges stem from the same alleged activities of former employees who face criminal charges.

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