SEC Fines Oracle $23 Mn For Bribing Foreign Officials Including in India
WASHINGTON, DC (IANS) – Cloud major Oracle will pay the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) more than $23 million to settle charges against the company for bribing officials in India, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The SEC said Oracle violated the law “when subsidiaries in Turkey, the UAE and India created and used slush funds to bribe foreign officials in return for business between 2016 and 2019”. The SEC had previously sanctioned Oracle in connection with the creation of slush funds.
In 2012, Oracle resolved charges relating to the creation of millions of dollars of “side funds by Oracle India, which created the risk that those funds could be used for illicit purposes”, the US regulator said on September 28.
The SEC’s investigation was done with assistance from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), the Capital Markets Board of Turkey, and the Emirates Securities and Commodities Authority.
“The creation of off-book slush funds inherently gives rise to the risk those funds will be used improperly, which is exactly what happened here at Oracle’s Turkey, UAE, and India subsidiaries,” said Charles Cain of the SEC.
“This matter highlights the critical need for effective internal accounting controls throughout the entirety of a company’s operations,” he added.
According to the SEC’s order, Oracle subsidiaries in Turkey and UAE also used the slush funds to pay for foreign officials to attend technology conferences in violation of Oracle policies and procedures.
The order found that in some instances, employees of the Turkey subsidiary used these funds for the officials’ families to accompany them on international conferences or take side trips to California.