The U.S. Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission are expanding their probe into possible kickbacks on the part of computer maker Hewlett Packard Co., a regulatory filing says.
The agencies have already been investigating the Palo Alto, Calif. company for possibly bribing authorities in Russia and Germany. Now, the agencies are also investigating similar improprieties in Austria, Serbia, the Netherlands and the Commonwealth of Independent States. The bribes are said to date back 10 years.
No charges have been filed. However, if HP is ever found guilty of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, it faces a penalty of $500,000 per bribe. Criminal penalties could exceed $2 million.
HP says it is cooperating with these investigations.
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