Sun may have broken US bribery laws

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Sun may have broken US bribery laws

Sun Microsystems has admitted that members of its company may have bribed foreign officials.

In a regulatory filing Sun said that the many may have broken US law, specifically the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

The company has not given details as to where the activity may have taken place.

"We have identified potential violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the resolution of which could possibly have a material effect on our business," Sun said in a 10-Q filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

The company said it had taken “remedial action” and had notified the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission, both of whom are investigating the case.

If found guilty Sun could face a heavy fine and possibly be banned from conducting business with government.

In its own filing Oracle said that it was aware of the case before it launched its to buy Sun. The news will come as a further headache for the two companies, after shareholders to stop the deal.

Authorities around the world are taking more of a focus in bribery allegations in the IT industry.

Last year the former head of Samsung was found guilty of taking part in bribery and tax evasion. Prosecutors asked for of jail time but hew escaped with a $109 million fine and three years suspended jail time.

In December Siemens paid more than $1bn in fines in Germany and the US over charges that the company had bribed government staff with cash in exchange for contracts.

In 2007 Alcatel-Lucent paid $2.5 million over charges that Lucent Technologies, before it was bought by Alcatel, bribed Chinese officials with free business trips to drum up business.

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