Dow Chemical caught bribing Indian officials, fined $325,000

SIOBHAN HUGHES, DOW JONES NEWSWIRES, FEBRUARY 15, 2007
WASHINGTON — Dow Chemical Co. will pay a $325,000 civil penalty to settle charges that a subsidiary made improper payments to Indian government officials who held sway over regulatory approvals for the company’s pesticides, the Securities and Exchange Commission said.
Midland-based Dow also agreed to cease and desist from future violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. It settled without admitting or denying wrongdoing, the SEC said late Tuesday.
The SEC found that from 1996 through 2001, Dow’s DE-Nocil Crop Protection Ltd. unit improperly paid an estimated $200,000 to Indian state and federal officials as it sought to register several products slated for marketing in time for India’s growing season. The SEC said these payments weren’t reflected adequately in Dow’s books and records.
The SEC said Dow conducted an internal investigation, voluntarily presented the results to the SEC and disciplined employees. The company also hired an independent auditor to review its books, the SEC said.
A Dow spokesman wasn’t immediately available to comment.

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