Glencore was ordered by a federal judge in New York to pay $700-million as a criminal punishment for a global bribery scheme orchestrated by the Swiss-based commodities trading and mining giant.
US District Judge Lorna G. Schofield on Tuesday imposed the sentence under terms of a plea deal with prosecutors, which was preceded by Glencore pleading guilty in May to a single count of conspiring to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The company must pay a fine of $428.5-million and $272.2-million in criminal forfeiture.
The penalty is part of the $1.5-billion Glencore agreed to pay to resolve bribery and market-manipulation probes in the US, UK and Brazil. Glencore units agreed to plead guilty to a list of charges ranging from bribery and corruption in South America and Africa, to price manipulation in US fuel-oil markets.
Prosecutors claimed Glencore paid more than $100-million in bribes to government officials in Brazil, Nigeria, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Venezuela. They said Glencore made $315-million from the scheme.
On Monday, Schofield ruled Glencore must pay $29.6-million to the founders of a company that provided healthcare services in 11 African countries but was forced to shut down. Crusader Health claimed it was driven out of business after Glencore bribed a public official in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to throw out a lawsuit brought by Crusader against a Glencore subsidiary.
In September, the commodity firm was sentenced in Connecticut to pay $486-million in fines and forfeitures in a case in which Glencore admitted conspiring to manipulate oil-price benchmarks. In November, a London judge imposed a £276-million ($333-million) penalty for Glencore’s effort to bribe government officials for access to oil cargoes across Africa.