Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay more than $70 million to settle charges that the company bribed doctors in Greece, Poland and Romania and paid kickbacks to Iraq to win contracts.
J&J to settle bribery, kickback charges
The New Brunswick, N.J.-based healthcare company agreed to pay $48.6 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest to settle charges with the Securities and Exchange Commission and $21.4 million to the Justice Department, according to a news release from the SEC.
The SEC charges that Johnson & Johnson violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The company said in a news release that it expects to reach a settlement for a related investigation in the U.K. over the next several days.
Johnson & Johnson said that in 2007 it voluntarily disclosed that some of its foreign subsidiaries may have made improper payments related to the sales of medical devices.
The company is accused of paying bribes of cash and “inappropriate travel” to public doctors in Greece to use the company's surgical implants and in Romania to prescribe the company's drugs, according to the SEC.
In addition, the SEC said Johnson & Johnson allegedly paid bribes to doctors and hospital administrators in Poland to win contracts and reportedly paid kickbacks to the government in Iraq in order to be awarded 19 contracts under the United Nations Oil for Food Program.
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