Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Sting.

According to the indictment, the 22 defendants created two price quotations for the unnamed African country that was supposedly looking to outfit its presidential guard. One price quotation had the real price of the goods and one had an illegal 20 percent “commission” added, 10 percent for the purchasing agent (FBI agent) and 10 percent for the country’s minister of defense.
Meanwhile, the actual sales in the real country probably went to Israeli Military Industries, Fabrique Nationale of Belgium, Norinco in China, the Russians at Izhmash, or some other company in a country that was more worried about closing the deal and keeping their workers employed than in observing First World business niceties in the land of the mordida.

25 comments:

tomcatshanger said...

US companies are only allowed to bribe the US Government.

Robert said...

Any doubt the msm will spin this into 'the evil merchants of death' have been stopped from taking advantage of the poor natives of a foreign land?

Maybe they should study up and realize that in post colonial Africa the only way you make a deal is by 'making a deal.'

jimbob86 said...

Payback for renigging on the Clinton Era S&W "deal"?

Tam said...

Doubtful.

S&W wasn't the only company busted.

And some of the Obama-DOJ conspiracy theories being floated on the intertubes are equally shaky, since this sting has been running for two years.

Jay said...

Someone else took the deal. Like you said, FN or someone else have a contract now.

FatWhiteMan said...

Under the Pat Robertson theory, this is payback for the deal S&W made with the devil some years back.

Owen said...

Holy Cow! I know that guy! I wonder if his business card will become a collectible?

Kristopher said...

Dumbasses.

You don't discuss mordita inside the US.

Firehand said...

I hate having to write this, but this is all assuming it's a real, no BS investigation as opposed to a politically-motivated pile of crap.

Do you have any idea how much it pisses me off to have to consider that? It really ticks me off to lose my trust in LE this way.

Of course, we've got SEALs being prosecuted because a terrorist got a bloody nose, so why trust any other organization to have higher standards?

Anonymous said...

You mean the Bush DOJ hated gun manufacturers?

Anonymous said...

Several companies have been busted for this over the years, in many different industries. Whether it should be illegal to bribe officials of other governments or not, it is, and has been since 1977. It is no secret, and all these fools should know better. Hell, I'm just a peon and not involved in sales whatsoever at a very large corporation and I have to read about this law and certify I won't be a dumbass every year.

B.S. philosopher said...

I have to second anonymous' comment on this. I'm a non-managerial employee at a large second-tier defense contractor and we have to study, read, and sign a statement every year to the effect that we won't attempt to bribe customers or pull any shenanigans with regards to pricing and kickbacks. Agree or disagree with the law, it's really not rocket science and I am frankly shocked that a relatively large company like S&W would be so easily taken in.

Anonymous said...

That anti-bribery law has cost us trillions of dollars in lost export trade. We lost out to Japan and the Eurozone in trading with other countries.

The evasion is to hire the relatives of the local president or prime minister as "consultants" at a high salary or for high fees, to get "advice" on trade deals.

Art

Anonymous said...

A pocket-sized version of Shootin' Buddy drops knowledge on the United States Attorney:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LuBstLZINco

Shootin' Buddy

Anonymous said...

S&W really should know better than that. The law is pretty clear what you can and can not due. Go to any large trade show that deals with arms or other ITAR resticted articles and there will be folks from State, Commerce, ICE and DIA wandering around. It's really their world not the FEEBEEs. AG Holder wanted some press no doubt.

Gerry

DirtCrashr said...

S&W should learn from the UN how to complete these kinda deals: you do it with drugs and child-slaves.

Mark B. said...

Goncalves and the executives of the other companies involved are guilty of unparalleled doofusery and asshattednes for not checking with principals within the nation with whom they thought they were doing business. I mean, instead of taking the word of the people they were dealing with as gospel. And that's even before they were paid for the first shipment. Long before.

If you're in a mood for a little felonious fraud you damn sure ought to be covering your six. I'd bet the anticipation of six-figure kickbacks turned off their synapses . . .

'Berg

Divemedic said...

"we have to study, read, and sign a statement every year to the effect that we won't attempt to bribe customers "

Hahahaha. Right. That is why the Air Force official who selected the new aircraft design got a job at the same aircraft manufacturer after she retired from Air Force "service"
http://tinyurl.com/yfj4zjz

Anyone who thinks that bribery and kickbacks don't happen in this country are foolish and naive.

Kristopher said...

I think their own offered kickbacks were what damned them the most, and what caught them.

By trying to not tell their own company what was going on so they could pocket abribe themselves, they ended up missing important shit like "is this man really who he says he is?"

Sigivald said...

Divemedic: His point was not that nobody is corrupt in the US. His point was that the people at Smith should have known or did know it was illegal.

Either they're incompetent or they're willfully breaking the law (pointless as the law is).

Not much sympathy either way (though more for the former).

Danny Dalton said...

I've saod ot befpre--
"Some trust fund prosecutor, got off-message at Yale thinks he's gonna run this up the flagpole? Make a name for himself?
Maybe get elected some two-bit congressman from nowhere, with the result that Russia or China can suddenly start having, at our expense, all the advantages we enjoy here?
No, I tell you. No, sir! Corruption charges! Corruption? Corruption is government intrusion into market efficiencies in the form of regulations.
That's Milton Friedman. He got a goddamn Nobel Prize. We have laws against it precisely so we can get away with it.
Corruption is our protection. Corruption keeps us safe and warm. Corruption is why you and I are prancing around in here instead of fighting over scraps of meat out in the streets.
Corruption is why we win. "

Larry said...

We had the same problem in Iraq. the company I worked for would be sitting in meetings where the price of granting a contract bid "win" were openly discussed in Arabic right in front of us. Then it would come to our turn and being a US DoD contractor, we had to lose out to Turkish and European companies.

It's tempting to play the game. Very tempting. There's nothing fair about it whatsoever. We're not reforming anybody. We're just cutting off our own noses to spite our faces.

B.S. philosopher said...

Anyone who thinks that bribery and kickbacks don't happen in this country are foolish and naive.

I never said that bribery doesn't happen in the US, I said that most large businesses are required by law to be aware of the statute and inform their employees of it, even those of us peons who have no control or interface with customers.

The implication being that an executive of a major corporation engaging in bribery of such a blatant manner is inexcusably stupid. There is no way he could plead ignorance of the anti-kickback statutes.

Anonymous said...

Job security...

When you have to justify your job you take the path of least resistance.

Carl H said...

http://www.futureofcapitalism.com/2010/01/the-bribery-case-against-the-arms-dealers