Le DoJ sur le sentier de la guerre contre BAE

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D’une façon officielle et solennelle, le ministère US de la justice (DoJ) vient de lancer une enquête sur BAE, pour les allégations de corruption contre ce consortium britannique fortement américanisé. BAE a fait une annonce en bourse et ses actions ont chuté de 8% hier. Bien évidemment, les allégations de corruption dans le cadre des contrats Yamamah sont au centre de la démarche du DoJ. Cette mesure confirme la dégradation constante de la situation de BAE dans cette affaire depuis décembre dernier.

Le quotidien Independent précise, en annonçant la nouvelle ce matin, que cette enquête pourrait également porter sur des individus et conduire à des demandes d’extradition de dirigeants de la firme.

«Jeremy Summers, a partner specialising in corruption cases at the law firm Russell Jones & Walker, warned that US lawyers would not hesitate in seeking the extradition of BAE executives suspected of wrongdoing.

»“The investigation may start with BAE's compliance systems but it will also look at individuals, which takes the company into the territory of the 2003 Extradition Act,” Mr Summers said.

»He warned that the investigation into BAE had parallels with the case of the NatWest Three, the three senior bankers who were extradited to the US to answer charges British prosecutors had decided not to pursue. The UK's Serious Fraud Office dropped its investigation into Al Yamamah last November, after warnings that national security issues were at stake.

»Mr Summers warned that BAE executives were very vulnerable to the US authorities. “The Americans do not have to present any sort of prima facie evidence in an extradition case,” he said. “Once the UK courts are satisfied that an allegation has been made and that they have the right person, that's pretty much it.”

»The DoJ investigation also raises questions over BAE's business interests in the US, including the £2bn takeover of Armor Holdings, which has not yet been formally approved by US authorities. The company depends on the US for more than two-fifths of its revenue.»


Mis en ligne le 27 juin 2007 à 08H44