Daimler, the parent company of Mercedes-Benz and Maybach, is going to pay the U.S. Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission $185 million to settle allegations that it paid bribes in order to secure deals with foreign government officials. The accusations first started when an auditor complained that it was fired for protesting secret bank accounts held by Daimler and used to bribe foreign officials between 1998 and 2008.
The court documents state that the manufacturer "made hundreds of improper payments worth tens of millions of dollars to foreign officials" to better obtain "contracts with government customers for the purchase of Daimler vehicles worth hundreds of millions of dollars.”
In addition to the U.S. fines, Daimler subsidiaries in Germany and Russia have agreed to plead guilty to these charges. The parent company and a China-based subsidiary will enter a deferred prosecution agreement under the deal.
[via NY Times Blog]