People charged with a Foreign Corrupt Practices Act-related offense either cop a plea or fight the case in court. Except for those who choose the third option. They run. If they’re living outside the U.S. when indicted, they might plan to never come back. That strategy can only work if they happen to be in a country that won’t extradite them, which is harder to predict in practice than on paper. Others have tried to find someplace new that’s friendly and beyond the reach of the U.S. Justice Department. But as Viktor Kozeny’s uncomfortable years in the Bahamas demonstrate, that’s not easy either, even with millions of dollars to make it happen.
The first FCPA fugitives appeared in 1982 and the latest this summer. Over the years, plenty have been caught and handed over to U.S. authorities. Others have eventually turned themselves in, deciding a life spent looking over their shoulder isn’t for them after all (“Hey there. Small world, isn’t it?”).
Yet some people facing FCPA charges, including the twelve mentioned below, are still at large, doing whatever they can to stay out of the jurisdiction of the U.S. federal courts.
Let’s meet them:
Ousama Naaman, Canadian, intermediary for a U.S. chemical company. Indicted August 2008; arrested July 30, 2009 in Frankfurt, Germany. Now in Germany.
Jeffrey Tesler, British, intermediary for Kellogg Brown & Root (KBR). Indicted February 2009; arrested March 5, 2009 in London, England. Now in the U.K.
Wojciech Chodan, British, salesman for a KBR affiliate. Indicted 2009. Location unknown.
James K. Tillery, American, executive of Willbros International. Indicted 2008. Location unknown.
Edgar Valverde Acosta, Costa Rican, Alcatel’s former senior country officer there. Superseding indictment issued March 2007. Last known location: Costa Rica.
Viktor Kozeny, Czech-born, Irish passport, president and chairman of Oily Rock Group Ltd. Indicted 2005. Now in the Bahamas.
Pablo Barquero Hernandez, Costa Rican, employed by Owl Securities and Investment Ltd. Indicted 2001. Last known location: Costa Rica.
Frerik Pluimers, Dutch, chairman, president and CEO of Saybolt International. Indicted 1998. Last known location: the Netherlands.
Rami Dotan, Israeli, air force officer. Indicted 1994. Last known location: Israel. The brigadier-general in charge of Israeli air force procurement was court martialed in Israel in 1991 and convicted along with two others of bribery, fraud, and theft for skimming at least $10 million from jet engine contracts with General Electric in the U.S. He was demoted to private and sentenced to 13 years’ imprisonment. Released in 2003.
Harold Katz, an Israeli and U.S. citizen, Israeli lawyer. Indicted 1994 (with Rami Dotan, above). Last known location: Israel.
Mario S. Gonzalez, Mexican, associated with Grupo Delta, a Mexican corporation acting as intermediary to Pemex. Indicted 1982. Last known location: Mexico.
Ricardo G. Beltran, Mexican, also associated with Grupo Delta. Indicted 1982. Last known location: Mexico.