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German firm to pay $32M to settle bribery charges

December 10, 2013

HOUSTON (AP) — A German engineering company has agreed to pay a $32 million fine as part of an agreement to settle charges it worked with a Texas company to bribe Nigerian officials in order to win a $387 million pipeline contract.

A U.S. Justice Department statement says Bilfinger SE conspired with Houston-based Willbros Group Inc. and others from late 2003 to 2005 to make more than $6 million in bribes to Nigerian officials.

Bilfinger was charged with violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

In court documents filed Monday in Houston federal court, the Mannheim, Germany-based company entered into a deferred prosecution agreement. If the company meets certain conditions within three years, the charges will be dropped.

In May 2008, Willbros agreed to pay more than $22 million in fines.