A corruption lawsuit in the USA against UK-headquartered but nowadays primarily US-based arms globocorp BAE Systems may move to the Supreme Court, according to reports. Reuters quotes lawyer Patrick Coughlin, representing the city employees' pension fund of Harper Woods, Michigan, as saying that he and his clients "will consider …
Maybe the big concern is that this might establish precedent for considering BAE Systems a de facto American company and stop all the ridiculous UK government spending....
"They have also argued that even though the payments were made in America, most of the key defendants are resident abroad and thus the US courts should not have jurisdiction in the matter" .... If one substitutes for "payments" another word, such as incursions or excursions, it would make the Gary McKinnon extradition pantomime seem even more ridiculous and malicious than it already is, and render the Law and Justice, a Fools' Ass to Petty Pathetic Politicians rather than Serving the Good of a Nation.
If McKinnon worked for BAE systems
"disgruntled SFO investigators leaked information, in particular about the Washington DC payments to Bandar when he was ambassador to the USA, and the Justice Department duly opened a file."
SFO should accept that Joe Public will deal with Blair in their own way, he is gone, he will not be EU anything, and his protector Brown will be gone soon enough. It's not for them to form links to foreign governments stronger than their loyalty to their own country!
"Thus far, however, US judges have accepted BAE's position that the matter is one for British courts to deal with - even though the only reason it comes before American beaks is that the British government has prevented it coming before UK ones."
If you recall Cash for Honors was quashed by Lord Goldsmith (a Blair appointee) who recommended that the case against Blair et al be dropped. So the chances of a successful prosecution in the UK while this lot are in power is zero... far too well connected, far too much political clout IMHO.
Likewise extradition requires the Home Secretaries approval and while he may be happy to extradite Brits on hearsay and no evidence, IMHO he won't extradite influential Labour supporters.
It strikes me that a little time will fix both problems, indeed just a few months.
A solution to make them happy?
Just tell them that had the deal not gone through, the company would have folded. Give them the money they would've got for their stock at the time, and tell them to FK off.
I remember the deal at the time (it was called project YT internally), and was quite important. It also helped out some of the work that was done for MOD and RAF projects.
The thing with doing business with other countries / cultures is that you have to respect their ways. If you don't want to, then you can't do business with them. (unless you actually invade Eqypt/Afganistan/Iraq/... and insert your own puppet government to get their oil)
Whilst I'm delighted with any US court that declines to consider the actions of foreigners abroad, I'd be willing to concede they have a legitimate interest if indeed "the payments to Bandar ... were made through a Washington DC bank".
It will be interesting to see how this pans out.
"American jurists may also have felt that BAE, as a company originally assembled from the UK defence-industrial base and headquartered in London, is surely not their business. It may be worth noting, however, that BAE nowadays is mostly American, having consistently shut British factories and spent British revenues on acquiring US firms. The company now employs substantially more people there than it does in the UK."
So, as pretty much all Apple hardware is made in China, Apple are Chinese and no longer American, same with pretty much all PC hardware companies, they are no longer American, they are Chinese!
We get it, you hate BAE which puts a pro-anything-but-BAE-and-British slant on to your articles.
So how many Chinese companies have Apple acquired?
How many thousand employees do Apple have working in China?
A small percentage might hate BAE for profiteering from illegal wars but most despise them for ripping off the UK taxpayer while dumping UK jobs.
the US banks get roped into this little upset for facilitating the payments?
All above board.
The fees were declared and not hidden. So, the deal was worth "tens of billions" - say 30bn then. The Prince got 2bn - less than 10%. I have seen larger percentage commissions paid on new car deals, let alone consultancy fees of £million IT deals! I'm just so convonced that this pension company is so worried about their reputation that they'd be questioning massive profits (not like any pension company I know)..... Can we suggest they might be a little friendly with someone like Boeing or Lockheed?
That's for a court to decide
If it was all above board, they could get it dismissed from court in a millisecond and wouldn't need to do a dodgy political deal with Blair.
Plus's Blairs claim would have been "it was all above board commission to a selling agent", not "your children will die if you prosecute this company and this governments representatives". I may be paraphrasing a little, but he pretty much played the terrorist card to get his own way.
Plus the SFO have looked at the details and concluded it wasn't a commission.
"you have to respect their ways"
Who says you have to respect their ways?
The Yanks certainly don't. The US has laws against corrupt payments, and an overview of the relevant principles and laws is likely to be part of the "ethics" training which seems to be compulsory in many US companies in recent years (including UK subsidiaries of US companies).
Wrt extradition: never mind extradition, it'd be nice to see Blair kept out of the USA for fear of being arrested on entry and brought before the courts on this... please please pretty please.
And I'll add "ever so pretty please please please" to the last aspiration...
The REAL reason...
...is undoubtedly that the Yanks were thoroughly pissed off that they didn't get the deal, 'cos someone offered bigger backhanders than Uncle Sam's little lads were offering.
Reference Lockheed and around a zillion other occurrences.
For the benefit of any predatory US attorneys trawling these waters, all the foregoing is "alleged", and yes, I know "Predatory Attorney" is tautology.
Foot and shoot!
So let me get this straight. The shareholder, who profited from this deal because naturally several billions worth of contracts tends to bump up the share price, wants to prove in court the company obtained a contract through illegal means which in turn benefitted the shareholder? If they were successful, wouldn't that mean that they in turn could be sued because they have knowingly made a profit on such a contract? Of course, if they immediately handed over such profits to the Justice Department they can protest their innocence and thus not be sued, but I don't see them doing that!
This reeks of a 'try to discredit a competitor' scam or just another means of fleecing a company for more money thus solving that financial black hole from dodgy investments that has occured recently... Surely this pension fund cannot seriously think this is a good idea?
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act 1977
As this is a UK website, UK readers (and indeed some US readers) may not be aware of the US's Foreign Corrupt Practices Act 1977 which would seem to prohibit the kind of payment being talked about here. A US pension fund may well want the US law applied to a payment made from a US bank, even if the accused isn't a US company, simply in order to try to establish the oft-mentioned "level playing field" so that BAe are not seen to be competing "unfairly" because the FCPA doesn't apply to them.
What were they expecting?
Any company, including those from the squeaky clean USA that has done business with Saudi Arabia has paid bribes. Because that's how things are done out there.
No bribe, sorry, comission - no deal.
Saudia Arabia wonderful tourist spot
Wtf are the western countries sending arms to a backwards stone your sister after she gets raped shithole like Saudia Arabia anyway? 15 of 19, 9/11 hijackers as well as Bin Laden family are Saudi. Friggin 13th century kingdom that never got the memo the renassiance came and went. I know why they do it. So they can go to congress and say we need F22s because even the Saudis have F16s now.
The Enemy is Within and Hiding at Home in the Shadows/in Ivory Towers with Feathered Nests
"Wtf are the western countries sending arms to a backwards stone your sister after she gets raped shithole like Saudia Arabia anyway?" ..... asdf Posted Wednesday 6th January 2010 01:36 GMT
Good question, asdf, to be answered by Stupid Backwards Intelligence and the Greed for Oily Money, I suppose. If you take away Arms and Munitions Manufacture and Research, do certain Western Economies Collapse ergo their Constant State of Arousal and Global Terrorist Campaigns to Start Crazy Fool Wars?
I'm reminded of a Steve Bell cartoon
From the dying days of the Major government - "Standard British Sleaze. Sanity in a world gone mad. Look for the shite mark.".
Do some reading of Private Eye and drop the "It's not important" or "Bloody Septics" lines. This is corruption and the Blair and Brown governments are implicated.
Which 'Supreme Court"
Being a bore and all that, but we now the tedious situation that the UK has copied the US title 'Supreme Court' for its highest court (sigh, gold old Law Lords not modern enough). Anyway, as a result sludge-for-brains people like me find it hard to know which 'Supreme Court' is being referred to (I suppose the context should enough, but who can be sure?). All a bit sad really, both having sludge-for-brains and the fact that HMG lacked the creativity/self confidence to think of a more unique name for the new Law Lords doodah.