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Two former executives of now-defunct Direct Access Partners LLC (DAP) were each sentenced to two years in prison for their roles in a bribery scheme involving Venezuelas state-owned economic development bank, Banco de Desarrollo Económico y Social de Venezuela (Bandes). On December 8, Tomas Clarke, the former Miami-based senior vice president of DAP, was sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to forfeit nearly $5.8 million for his role. On December 4, Ernesto Lujan, the former managing partner at DAPs Miami office, was sentenced to two years in prison and ordered to forfeit $18.5 million. The pair pleaded guilty in August 2013 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to conspiracy to violate the FCPA, the Travel Act, and to commit money laundering, as well as substantive counts of these offenses. As described in a prior FCPA Scorecard post, DAP, a New York based broker-dealer, earned more than $60 million in commissions from trades placed by Bandes over a five year period. To obtain that business, DAP paid millions of dollars in bribes to a Bandes official, Maria De Los Angeles Gonzalez De Hernandez (Gonzalez), often routing them through third parties and offshore bank accounts in Switzerland and elsewhere. Clarke and Lujan are two of five former DAP executives to plead guilty in connection with this case. In March, two other former executives, including DAPs former CEO, were each sentenced to four years in prison. One other former executive, who pleaded guilty in August 2013, has yet to be sentenced. Gonzalez, who pleaded guilty in November 2013 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to conspiracy to violate the Travel Act and to commit money laundering, as well as substantive counts of these offenses, also is awaiting sentencing.
On September 30, the former CFO of Siemens S.A.-Argentina pleaded guilty in a federal court in New York to conspiring to pay nearly $100 million dollars in bribes to Argentinian officials. The former executive, Andres Truppel, who is a German and Argentinian citizen, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the antibribery, internal controls, and books and records provisions of the FCPA, and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. As described in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York's press release, the violations stemmed from Siemens bid to win an Argentine government contract worth $1 billion to create a national identity card system. Mr. Truppel faces up to five years in prison and three years of supervised release when he is sentenced; there is no information on when sentencing will occur. Truppel was one of eight former Siemens executives indicted in 2011 on charges of conspiring to violate the FCPA and other statutes (see previous FCPA Scorecard coverage here and here). Siemens itself reached a record $800 million resolution in 2008 with the DOJ and SEC related to FCPA violations in numerous countries, including Argentina. Siemens S.A.-Argentina pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the FCPA's books and records provisions as part of that resolution.