Alex Spence of The Times of London reported today that ‘a senior figure’ from Alstom met with Richard Alderman, director of the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office.
Alstom initiated the contact, Spence’s story said.
“The SFO is investigating allegations that Alstom’s British arm was part of a ‘widescale’ international plot to bribe officials to win contracts in overseas markets. Alstom denies paying bribes,” according to the story.
Sources told The Times settlement wasn’t discussed but “that the meeting could ease the way to the two sides eventually reaching an agreement that would end the investigation.”
Paris-based Alstom provides equipment and services for power generation and high-speed rail transport. It operates in more than 70 countries with 93,000 employees. Revenue last year was about €23 billion. Its ADRs trade in the pink sheets under the symbol ALSMY.PK.
The story said the SFO thinks Alstom may have used a U.K.-based shell company to pay ‘at least £81 million in corrupt payments to foreign officials between 2004 and 2010’ in Africa and the Middle East, among other places.
Spence covers litigation and financial crime for The Times. He can be contacted here.
The story is here (subscription required).