Have all business ethics gone down the drain lately? It seems that Toyota isn't the only Auto powerhouse that gets involved in shady business practices. The Detroit News reports that Mercedes-Benz's parent company, Daimler AG, has paid tens of millions in the form of bribes to governments and/or officials of twenty-two countries.
The Justice Department has officially charged the manufacturer with violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which prevents U.S. firms from paying off foreign officials. Between 1998 and 2008, Daimler is said to have been "investing" in countries such as China, Croatia, Egypt, Greece, Hungary, Indonesia, Iraq, Ivory Coast, Latvia, Nigeria, Russia, Serbia and Montenegro, Thailand, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam with the intent of securing contracts with government customers for the purchase of Daimler vehicles valued at hundreds of millions of dollars.
Investigators reportedly traveled to 25 countries and interviewed dozens of people, including former Daimler chairman Juergen Schrempp and other executives. In the process, secret bank accounts were uncovered. However, to Daimler's credit, executives were released when it discovered that some improper transactions were made in Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe.
According to Reuters, The charges consist of two counts - conspiracy, and falsifying books and records under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Diamler is expected to be slapped with a $185 - 200 million fine as a result of these charges.
Well, I guess greed is the root cause of all these unethical practice. Even charitable organisations are making headlines for all the wrong reasons in Singapore.