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SFO considers more arrests in Rolls Royce case

The director of the UK Serious Fraud Office said the agency is close to making more arrests in its bribery investigation of jet engine maker Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc.

The SFO made two arrests in the case in February when it executed search warrants in London.

Director David Green QC said in an interview Tuesday at the Cambridge International Symposium on Economic Crime that the investigation concerns “several divisions of Rolls-Royce business activity” and the agency isn’t “hanging around,” according to Bloomberg.

“There will be more arrests,” he said.

Rolls Royce said in late 2012 that the SFO had asked it to investigate allegations of misconduct involving intermediaries in Indonesia and China.

The SFO began a probe into the company in December. In January, the agency said it was granted “blockbuster funding in the low millions” of pounds for its investigation. It had requested about $30 million for the Rolls Royce investigation, among others.

Defense and aerospace companies often rely on intermediaries in countries where they lack a significant presence or where law requires them to work through local vendors.

BAE Systems Plc paid $450 million in fines to the United States and Britain in 2010 after a long investigation into its business practices in Saudi Arabia, Tanzania, Sweden, the Czech Republic, and Hungary.

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Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.

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