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Report: Japan’s first corporate plea deal resolves overseas bribery case

Prosecutors in Tokyo used a plea bargain to resolve an overseas bribery case with a power plant maker under a new law adopted in June, according to a report from Japan.

“Yokohama-based Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Ltd. entered the plea bargain in connection with a bribery case involving one of its employees and a civil servant in Thailand,” the Japan Times said Saturday.

Bribing overseas officials has been an offense in Japan since 1998. But only four cases have been prosecuted, the report said.

The plea-bargain system was introduced in June for cases involving organized crime or bribery.

Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems declined to comment about the case or the plea deal, according to the Japan Times, only saying it “cooperates appropriately with authorities when it finds a potential breaches of legal compliance.”

The case involves a power plant contract awarded in 2013, the report said.

In 2014, Japan’s Marubeni Corporation pleaded guilty to violating the FCPA. It admitted bribing Indonesian officials to win an electricity contract for itself and a partner, Alstom SA.

The DOJ said Marubeni initially refused to cooperate with the government’s investigation into an $118 million contract known as the Tarahan project.

In Saturday’s report, the Japan Times said Tokyo prosecutors won’t indict Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems “in exchange for information on the employee involved.”


Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog.

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