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HP's Moscow Offices Raided In Bribery Probe

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the hey-those-printer-cartridges-are-expensive dept.

HP 106

FrankPoole writes "Hewlett-Packard's Moscow offices were raided Wednesday as part of a bribery investigation by Russian and German authorities. The news was first reported by The Wall Street Journal [currently paywalled; Reuters also covered it], which wrote that HP is suspected of allegedly paying out nearly $11 million in bribes to secure a major Russian government contract several years ago via a German subsidiary. Ironically, the contract was with the Prosecutor General's office of the Russian Federation, which will now play a role in investigating HP. While HP knew of the investigation as far back as December, the company did not disclose the information in any SEC filings. Instead, in its most recent quarterly report, HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.'"

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first bribe! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874790)

I paid kathleen fent $5 to suck me off.

Re:first bribe! (0, Redundant)

sopssa (1498795) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874824)

Best part of the summary:

HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.'

I guess many US companies think the same way, based on their acting.. It's common, or is it the best way to make money?

Re:first bribe! (1)

Luke Wilson (1626541) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875302)

I focued on this:

Ironically, the contract was with the Prosecutor General's office of the Russian Federation, which will now play a role in investigating HP

That's not irony, that's corruption.

Re:first bribe! (1)

dwiget001 (1073738) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877144)

HP obviously missed the Prosecutor General's memo that he needed a bigger bribe....

Re:first bribe! (1)

durrr (1316311) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875476)

What are the model number for HP rocket launchers and suitcase nukes? I've heard they are quite popular outside of the US, except for the rather expensive refill rockets and plutonium, but some third parties offer them a bit cheaper, although with no warranty.

Re:first bribe! (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | more than 4 years ago | (#31879036)

I don't know about other countries, but in Russia, the laws are commonly stacked up such that you simply can't do business if you don't cough up the bribe - they'll close you down otherwise, because if you don't break law A, you're breaking law B (which directly contradicts A).

You can't even catch a corrupt official red-handed anymore. Not so long ago, they've enacted the law that using any concealed audio or video recording or transmitting device while dealing with a government official is a crime (which can be punishable by up to 3 years in jail). Notices to that effect adorn doors of many offices of higher-profile officials - I've seen a bunch myself.

Re:first bribe! (1)

b4dc0d3r (1268512) | more than 4 years ago | (#31879712)

Next time someone replies to a troll like this just to get your comment higher on the page, I'm going to mod you off-topic, because you're off the topic that you're replying to. Unfortunately I won't be able to leave a comment explaining why. You want to top-post on this story, you're going to have to come up with some sort of kathleen fent-related content.

Your comment is not more worthy than anyone else's comment until it has been judged so by the community. You're just not special, sorry if no one has told you that before.

Go ahead, mod me off-topic, I'll come back stronger than ever.

sopssa the loser is a welfare case with no job (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31880712)

You don't even have a job, sopssa. All you do is sit around here all day on slashdot while you suck welfare and you talk like you actually think you know something about corporate America? Give us a break, fake.

Re:first bribe! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874854)

You overpaid then. Most people only have to pay her with a punch to the face. She's desperate for any dick that isn't Rob's micropeen.

Re:first bribe! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875604)

You've got ripped off. She paid me to suck me off.

You're payed for suckoff? I sold groceries to her! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31878720)

She payed me thice as much as you and she got a mouth full of my manmilk, cottage cheese, and some sweaty brew. You should invest your manjuice more wisely, because it has all kinds of related products that women pay dearly for you to export to them.

Heh, First you need a way to get it there. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31878784)

What do you go to a well and dip a cum bucket down a rope and carry the groceries to her? I'm a handyman myself, and I've been laying pipe for quite a long time. I even have some
do-it-yourself videos you can buy to teach yourself how to extend shorter pipes to couple with uneven unions. One union I'm proud of coupling was this house with three Lesbian stewards that weren't getting their proper recognition in Utah, so with a little junction the paper diagrams point to me as a 3-way switch that exceeds Code specifications.

Are you calling me a Smallcock, Mario? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31879004)

Last I checked, the first mushroom you went down on wasn't a magic one.

There's just so much about this... (0, Redundant)

Quantos (1327889) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874808)

That's funny and wrong I don't know where to begin...

Re:There's just so much about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874820)

How about the beginning?

Re:There's just so much about this... (2, Funny)

Eternauta3k (680157) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874846)

I specially love this:

HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations

Thank god they specified foreign nations, cause in the US that'd be wrong

Re:There's just so much about this... (3, Informative)

russotto (537200) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874930)

HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations

Thank god they specified foreign nations, cause in the US that'd be wrong

In many other nations, the distinction between the laws on paper and accepted practices is much greater than it is in the United States (except maybe in Chicago or Philadelphia...). For instance, in most of the US, if you try to bribe a cop to get out of a traffic ticket, you're going to jail most of the time. In Mexico, the bribe -- la mordida -- is pretty much expected, and you're more likely to go to jail if you DON'T offer it, even though bribery is illegal in Mexico. So HP actually has a point here.

Looks like HP made the mistake of dealing with a dishonest politician... defined as one who won't stay bought.

Re:There's just so much about this... (4, Informative)

Jah-Wren Ryel (80510) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875012)

In many other nations, the distinction between the laws on paper and accepted practices is much greater than it is in the United States

Too bad for US corps, we have this law here called The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act [wikipedia.org] that makes it illegal to bribe foreign officials.

Re:There's just so much about this... (1)

CorporateSuit (1319461) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875146)

Too bad for US corps, we have this law here called The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act that makes it illegal to bribe foreign officials.

Proof that the government hates competition.

Re:There's just so much about this... (2, Interesting)

painandgreed (692585) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877266)

Too bad for US corps, we have this law here called The Foreign Corrupt Practices Act that makes it illegal to bribe foreign officials.

Which effectively prevents a US corp from doing business in many countries if held to, including Mexico, Russia, China, etc. It is not more meant to be obeyed than the laws against bribery in the nations where bribery is the de facto method of doing business. It's just a hammer for somebody to use if you piss off somebody. You go to China but you can't do business unless you pay the bribes but if you (or the person you paid the bribes to) ever piss off the wrong person in government, then they'll hit you with those bribes they demanded. Then the US government will go "gosh, we can't support that", and the hit you with their hammer too as a form of appeasement to various parties. Just like many of the laws in the US and the powers passed after 9-11, they expect you to break something, simply because they want to have something to use against you if they need the excuse.

Re:There's just so much about this... (1)

21mhz (443080) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878178)

You go to China but you can't do business unless you pay the bribes

Isn't the ethical solution to get back out of China?

And I'm speaking as an emigrant out of Russia, where I came to detest the pervasive corruption.

Re:There's just so much about this... (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 4 years ago | (#31880656)

You go to China but you can't do business unless you pay the bribes but if you (or the person you paid the bribes to) ever piss off the wrong person in government, then they'll hit you with those bribes they demanded. Then the US government will go "gosh, we can't support that", and the hit you with their hammer too as a form of appeasement to various parties.

If the contract is large enough, the government will step in and do the bribery itself (but then it's probably legal).

Re:There's just so much about this... (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875678)

In many other nations, the distinction between the laws on paper and accepted practices is much greater than it is in the United States (except maybe in Chicago or Philadelphia...).

Not so much greater as they're just different. See lobbying/campaign contribution/etc.

Re:There's just so much about this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31877678)

Looks like HP made the mistake of dealing with a dishonest politician... defined as one who won't stay bought.

Depending on who the bribee was dealing with then a further definition might be added: Dead motherfucker.

Apparently... (2, Funny)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874812)

They didn't pay enough.

Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (2, Interesting)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874902)

Indeed. In 3rd-world countries you must bribe if you want to compete because your competitors are bribing.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1, Funny)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874932)

Russia is basically a third world country with nukes.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875164)

You know, I read a lot. Especially about things that have to do with history. I find that shit fascinating. Here's a fact, I don't know if you know or not, Russians were spawned by niggers.

It's a fact. You see, russians have black blood pumpin' through their hearts. If you don't believe me, you can look it up. Hundreds and hundreds of years ago, you see, the mongols conquered Rushier. And mongols are niggers.

So you see, way back then, uh, russians were like vikings from vikingia. They all had blonde colored skin and horny hats, but, uh, well, then the mongols moved in there, and uh, well, they changed the whole country. They did so much fuckin' with Russian women, huh? That they changed the whole bloodline forever. That's horny helmets and blonde skin became flat mongy faces and alcoholism. You know, it's absolutely amazing to me to think that to this day, hundreds of years later, that Russians still carry that nigger gene.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875346)

try reading some more, the mongols were asian, not african (and yes, i get the quote, it just doesnt really work).

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (3, Informative)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875182)

Wow. ok.
History lesson:
The US and its primary allies are the first world nations.
Russia and its primary allies are the second world nations.
Everyone else that isn't important enough to vaporize in a global thermo-nuclear war is a third world nation.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875752)

So where does China fit into this? They are not US allies, as Taiwan is always a crisis waiting to happen for the US and China. China is not a Russian ally, as they've fought quite a few wars over the past 100 years. Russia has sold China some weapons, but Russia would sell nukes to North Korea if it would get the money for it. But they're certainly not primary allies. Let's say they're on speaking terms. And I would argue that in a global thermo-nuclear war, China will be important in one way or another.

So what is it? Oh, right: China is by the vast majority of economic and military metrics a first world nation, except that it is in polar opposition to the US.

The more I think about your post, the less it makes sense.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876180)

China was considered 2nd world country due to similar political systems and their support for North Korea in Korea War. This despite soviet-sino war and it's self-imposed isolationism, as it still stayed largely true to its original policy of supporting hostile nations such as North Korea.

Really folks, you need to get your terminology straight. Third world was not named third world because of its poverty, as current youth seems to think - it has been named to due to cold war divide into "us", "enemy" and "neutral". As in first, second and third world.
It's just that for last twenty years second world largely vanished (as they are no longer the enemy they used to be) and most countries composing third world are very poor.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

NeutronCowboy (896098) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876912)

It seems then that the old terminology has outlived its usefulness.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877004)

Somewhat.

China is the new ideologically opposed super power, so it would still be 2nd world. Russia itself may soon be out of second world status though.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877274)

Agreed. The "three worlds" metaphor doesn't account for the rise of nuclear nations with their own agenda like China and India, for the fact that the standard of living in Mexico and Argentina exceeds that of Russia, for the fact that many of the former East Bloc countries have moved toward the west or actually joined the E.U...

It was simplistic in 1970. In 2010, it's just useless.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878146)

The historical euphemism has been "non-aligned."

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876460)

[citation needed]
 
slashdot needs a [citation needed] function like facebook has for liking status updates.
 
  Hadlock [slashdot.com] and27 other people [slashdot.com] require[citation needed] [slashdot.com]

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876740)

If you are over the age of 15, you should know something about the cold war. Since your UID is lower than mine, I can safely assume you didn't join this site at the age of 9.

[citation [google.com] needed] [wikipedia.org] indeed [nationsonline.org]

Was that so hard?

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31879912)

Maybe if you were 15 years old or younger, you'd know that Russia is no longer a communist country. 2nd world = communist states (at least, it did back when people actually used these labels). At some point, people generally switched to referring to states in terms of how developed they are, which seems to be more useful now that there is no Soviet Union and resulting satellites.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31877362)

Erm... if you want to get technical...

The USSR and its primary allies are second world nations.

Just sayin'.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31878368)

Wow. ok.
History lesson:
The US and its primary allies are the first world nations.
Russia and its primary allies are the second world nations.
Everyone else that isn't important enough to vaporize in a global thermo-nuclear war is a third world nation.

Thats the old definition. Nowadays (at least here in Europe) it has came to mean something different. A nation is judged to be first world, second world and third world by how developed it is in respect to welfare, rule of law, human rights, democracy, level of education et.c.

Now most nations in Western Europe, Australia, Japan and a few others are considered first world nations. Some states within USA could perhaps be considered first world.
Russia, China (at least parts of it), USA and a few other American countries, India, most of Eastern Europe et.c. is second world nations.
And most of the world still belongs to the third world. But on the positive, never before in history has the living standards in the third world been as good as they are today.

It is a bit Euro-centric, but the original definition was very US-centric. When the original definition was used, USA was still on equal foot with Western Europe and other developed nations and way ahead of second world nations, since then most nations in both first and second world continued to develop rapidly, but USA not so much. If you get your welfare distribution working, increase your productivity per capita, decrease your working hours, rise your level of education, fix your health care system, et.c., then you might get to the rank of a first world country again.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (2, Interesting)

Nadaka (224565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878582)

Productivity per capita? Sorry, but that is one of the few metrics with USA still at the top. Unfortunately the average American doesn't really benefit from that hard work, it mostly goes to make the top 5% even richer.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875730)

Russia is basically a third world country with nukes.

Russia is not in africa. 3rd world country means Africa (go look up what 3rd world country means)

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876342)

Actually "third world" referred to any country not aligned with either capitalist countries such as the US (first world) or communist countries such as the Soviet Union (second world). Thus, the third world was Africa, South America, the Middle East, and India.

However, nowadays, "third world" can be used to refer to areas stricken with severe poverty. For example, I can say, "The rust belt of the United States is essentially a third world country" and everyone but you would know exactly what I was talking about.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31877420)

Russia has always been a third world country. The only thing second world about it is the propaganda.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

camcorder (759720) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875502)

You must be very experienced third-world trader. Bribing is an ethical issue, and apparently this ethical culture is not limited to the third-world countries, and western countries are also very convenient with bribing. You and those giving your insightful mod are just accusing lots of nations with this kind of ignorant claim.

Actually using bribing as a way of marketing their overpriced products is a practice not because they could not compete with local third-world companies although they are superior, but it's because local companies are clear winner when you put price/performance criteria on the table.

Although you're right that they need bribing in order to compete, it's not because competitors are also bribing, real reason is local companies are as good and a great magnitude cheaper than over-priced products of western companies.

Re:Necessity (Re:Apparently...) (1)

Jeremy Erwin (2054) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878122)

You could always bribe the local prosecutors to investigate your rivals for corruption

Re:Apparently... (1)

jmichaelg (148257) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874958)

You may be right.

The case reminds me of Eddie DeBartolo, the former 49'ers owner, getting shook down by Governor Edwards of Louisiana. DeBartolo wanted a riverboat gambling license and Edwards wanted cash in exchange. Louisiana politics were notoriously corrupt so if you were going to do business there, you had a choice, pay the bribe or don't do business. Evidently Russia has the same kind of business rules.
 

Re:Apparently... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31878396)

What do you mean were notoriously corrupt? They still are.

Re:Apparently... (2, Funny)

e2d2 (115622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874970)

Damn it you beat me to it. I was gonna ask if they paid a bribe or if they failed to pay one. The article doesn't make it clear.

Re:Apparently... (1)

Fred_A (10934) | more than 4 years ago | (#31880684)

That's Russia for you.
Damned if you do,
Damned if you don't.

Re:Apparently... (0)

zero_out (1705074) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875256)

You're modded funny, but that's probably the truth.

Re:Apparently... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875764)

There's going to be a lot of comments like that -- which are funny and not entirely inaccurate -- but there are more ways of looking at it.

First, Russia was a collapsed country when that was going on. Eventually enough Law and Order got reinstated enough to fight back against corruption, and we're now seeing that applied to HP. Sure, they're probably being raided by the same people who took the bribes, and we won't see any currently established Russians getting charged alongside, but that brings us to the second point.

Russia got busted on Regan's wheel. I'm not saying that's entirely a bad thing, but it has consequences. About the only Russian organization that wasn't completely crushed was the KGB. They fought back. It's no surprise that Putin runs the show now, and in the old way. From the Russian POV the invasion has been fought back from the gates of Moscow just like the Germans.

Western companies were not welcomed as partners to establish Russian democracy & capitalism & global neighborliness. Western companies were welcomed in the same way German supplies and weapons were -- as resources to raid and take over. This was already most clear during Bush Jr's tenure. He let corporations run wild there without putting in equal support for developing democracy and rule of law there. All apparently in exchange for the single key moment when his buddy Putin said 'Yeah, our intelligence thinks Saddam has WOMD too'.

(I'm not fond of the Dems either, just Bush has the most memorable face-palm moments about handling the resurgence of Russian dictatorship.)

So yeah, they didn't pay enough -- HP does not currently present enough value to Russia to be left alone. So they're going to be squeezed to a rind now. They are not the first Western company this has happened to, and they are not going to be the last.

Re:Apparently... (1)

scooter.higher (874622) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877364)

In Russia, a bribed Prosecutor General's office prosecutes you.

TROLL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874832)

LOL!

Wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874840)

HP's Moscow Offices Raided In Non-Bribery Probe

In other news... (0, Troll)

srussia (884021) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874868)

SEC sues Goldman Sachs.

Compare and contrast.

Arthur Levitt (1)

srussia (884021) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875270)

Arthur Levitt: The longest-serving SEC chairman (1993 to 2001). Hired by Goldman in June 2009 as an adviser on public policy and other matters.

Go offshore for "Greater Operational Flexibility" (1)

gestalt_n_pepper (991155) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874900)

(i.e. "Bribes"). Yeah, HP, how did that work out for you? Too bad they can't claw back your bonus for *that* move.

Ummm, (1)

HazMat 79 (1481233) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874928)

big business as it is normally done. Right?

I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (4, Interesting)

Biff Stu (654099) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874946)

It was Fiorina at the time.

Government is ultimately at fault (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875210)

Only government holds the key to this injustice. Same as here in the US, where bribing politicians is an everyday occurrance, government has the final say in whether the bribe is taken.

I find it alarming that most people choose to blame the solicitor (HP in this case), who only does what government encourages them to do. Sure, the private party may have conspired to commit a crime, but again, government ultimately holds the key to making it happen.

Re:Government is ultimately at fault (1)

Fjandr (66656) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877570)

Really the only difference between countries in their bribery and government contracts is the how they go about it. It's like the difference between a girlfriend who's only there for your bank account (assuming you both know that's the reason), a high-priced call girl, a middle-class hooker, and a crackwhore. They're all selling it. The only difference is in the terms used and how likely you are to lose your wallet to the pimp.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (2, Funny)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875360)

Oh you mean the one that is running for Senate?

http://carlyforca.com/ [carlyforca.com]

If California elects that crooked bitch, they'll get exactly what they deserve.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (0, Troll)

gangien (151940) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875646)

California is already getting what they deserve, for so many stupid policies. But they shouldn't worry, Bernanke and company will bailout cali, i mean, they help bailout grease, how could they turn down cali? SO i guess, they're not getting what they deserve, oh well.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875824)

Please learn to spell "Greece." It makes you look like less of an ignorant tool when you rant about stupid people.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (1)

gangien (151940) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875954)

hahaha yeah. i deserved that one.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (1)

gangien (151940) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878370)

yeah i'm really trolling there. I love you mods, you're never biased, and never mod down stuff because you don't agree politically!! <3 <3 <3

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (1)

frosty_tsm (933163) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876562)

Oh you mean the one that is running for Senate?

http://carlyforca.com/ [carlyforca.com]

If California elects that crooked bitch, they'll get exactly what they deserve.

She's running for the US Senate (not the state-level), so the rest of the country gets to suffer with us.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876634)

No, I mean the rest of the US is going to saw California off at the state line & push it into the Pacific, ala Bugs Bunny.

Re:I wonder if this will lead up to the CEO? (1)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877318)

I believe cartoon physics says that if we do so, California will stay in place and the rest of the U.S. will fall into the Atlantic.

currently paywalled; Not anymore (2, Informative)

viking80 (697716) | more than 4 years ago | (#31874968)

If you link from /. it is paywalled. As always, if you link from Google, it is all free. Just paste WSJ headline into Google, and go:

http://www.google.com/search?q=H-P+Executives+Face+Bribery+Probes [google.com]

First hit is the article in full.

Funny how Google is a better front end to WSJ than WSJ itself. Maybe WSJ is shooting itslef in the foot with this policy. (Same with Mercury News and others)

That was Wednesday (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31874980)

Today is Friday

In Soviet Amerika (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875060)

( HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.'" )

it is upper class to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.

Yours In Akademgorodok,
Kilgore Trout

Bribes are an everyday part of business at times. (5, Insightful)

Neuroticwhine (1024687) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875072)

While i didnt RTFA, but just to focus in on one aspect of the summary,
"HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.'"

While they may have been wrong in this situation, the statement itself is very true; After spending some time in china for instance, bribery is certainly prevalent. Also when we examine the US system, with lobbyists and contributions... is it really that different?

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875250)

Not to mention Cornhusker Kickback and Louisiana Purchase.

For sale, votes: Current price between $250,000,000 and $1,500,000,000 depending upon condition. Please see your nearest associate for details.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

Yaotzin (827566) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875684)

Well, as true as your statement may be, it doesn't make bribery ok. Government officials in China have been executed for accepting bribes. If you have to bribe someone, you should make sure that you can't be convicted for it.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876786)

Those dealing with such countries are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If they don't bribe they won't suceed, if they do bribe and someone decides to make an example of them for whatever reason then they may end up doing time.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (2, Interesting)

Yaotzin (827566) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877092)

I think that punishing the people who accept bribes is more important than punishing those who bribe. It's not really fair, but if the financial climate requires bribery then obviously something is wrong. Punishing business interests for trying to succeed could lead to lowering the incentive to do business within the region. But by making sure that no one wants to accept a bribe, then you change the business climate. People accepting bribes are the real criminals.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877560)

Sounds good. So what do you do if the "people who accept bribes" are the same as the people in charge of prosecuting bribery?

This is not a hypothetical question.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

Yaotzin (827566) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877718)

Good point. In that case, I'd say that you're pretty much screwed. Unless you have some kind of secret police watching the people in charge of prosecuting bribery. Although I can't say I like the idea of secret police all too much...

"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?"

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878198)

Good news! Russia *does* have some secret police watching out for this sort of issue. Their job is to KILL YOU when you start to complain about this problem.

http://www.cpj.org/killed/europe/russia/ [cpj.org]
http://www.rferl.org/content/article/1071933.html [rferl.org]

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878660)

It's really a question with no good answer.

A governement trying to weed out corrution could set up an independent body to investigate crimes commited by law enfocement but there is of course the risk of that becoming corrupt too.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (2, Insightful)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877542)

Those dealing with such countries are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If they don't bribe they won't suceed, if they do bribe and someone decides to make an example of them for whatever reason then they may end up doing time.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why corruption destroys national economies. Investors and multinationals understand this fact, and only the most desperate or stupid choose to do business in such an environment.

Russia has been hanging foreign and domestic corporations out to dry for a decade using the corruption catch-22. NTV, Yukos... I'll go out on a limb and say that any foreign corporation doing business in Russia is insane. Sorry, my Russian Slashdot friends, you're great people, but your government is a business deathtrap.

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE62E1SU20100315 [reuters.com]

"My recommendation is: 'Maybe you should reconsider doing business in Russia,'" she said. "I am considerably more optimistic about Nigeria than I am about Russia on this issue."

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (2, Insightful)

kkohlbacher (922932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875922)

I hope these individuals are dealt with with the verocity China sets forth on individuals breaking laws of this caliber.

It amazes me how ethical behavior has taken a back seat to profits (see: Massey Energy, Maydoff, and the cause of that... oh what was that thing... uh, oh yea, global recession).

How many of you were awstruck when Google pulled out of China? I was taken aback. Shocked that I was shocked. And I asked myself why that is?At the threat of losing a huge financial opportunity, I was amazed that a company didn't take it lying down. They said 'F you' and threatened them back.

That's the way it should be and the world needs more of it.

Respect +10, Google.

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877922)

Quote:
One of the things I have always found troubling about Westerners doing business in emerging market countries is that they sometimes take an almost perverse pride in discussing payoffs to government officials. It is as though their having paid a bribe is a symbol of their international sophistication and insider knowledge. Yet, countless times when I am told of the bribe, I know the very same thing could almost certainly have been accomplished without a bribe.

Source: Chinalawblog.com [chinalawblog.com] .

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

HungWeiLo (250320) | more than 4 years ago | (#31880178)

I did a business analyst internship with Weyerhaeuser, and their corporate policy specifically allows gifts to be given to business partners, vendors, and government officials whenever "the local custom or culture dictates."

Re:Bribes are an everyday part of business at time (1)

dasdrewid (653176) | more than 4 years ago | (#31880180)

Just read the history of Richard Branson and Virgin Records. They found it was cheaper to break the law and pay the fines than sell legal records, and they made a boat-load of money doing just that.

HP? (1)

MrKevvy (85565) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875186)

This gives "Radia" a whole new meaning.

Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (4, Informative)

zero_out (1705074) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875370)

Instead, in its most recent quarterly report, HP states that in foreign nations 'it is common to engage in business practices that are prohibited by laws and regulations.'

Apparently they didn't read their own Ethics & Compliance materials. As a former HP employee, I can tell you that every year the employees are required to take an online course in Ethics and Compliance. Part of those materials mentions that HP won't participate in any activities that are expected practice in other countries, but forbidden in the US. The specific example of bribery was included. Furthermore, simply knowing that a partner or subsidiary is doing something unethical on behalf of HP is forbidden. The act of a business partner bribing a customer to secure a contract for HP was one of the examples. In fact, there were even videos with actors portraying these situations. Then again, maybe the training materials grew out of this specific case.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31875614)

I take this class every year as an HP employee. It must give HP the warm and fuzzies to say their employees are updated each year. It's actually a complete WASTE OF TIME! None of the scenarios affect me or anyone I know in HP, not a single one. Sure if I was in sales or an executive, but for the rest of HP employees it's a running joke. We know they only reason we take it is because of the few much higher up in the food chain.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (1)

CherniyVolk (513591) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875626)

Much respect, but those training items are really smoke screen passed on to the individual workers (as if they had any economic power to bribe a foreign official). They do not apply to upper management or board of directors (who can make those decisions of bribery), never have and probably won't any time soon. However, because you have to take those courses, the board of directors can present on demand an active company practice and policy to appease any would-be investigators, and ultimately provide spin and diversion for public relations statements/responses.

If anything, take a look at all the top CEOs. I wonder how many people from managers to salesman to janitors at Apple are dressed in running shoes and stone washed jeans and a simple shirt like Steve Jobs. Over at Microsoft, I wonder how many people are running around with scruffy hair, no tie top button unbuttoned and half the shirt untucked from a pair of general slacks/khakis. This is just dress code... anything more serious is more than likely far more apparent.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31876152)

Yeah, it's like that everywhere. Every time the upper management at Lockheed Martin breaks another law, we get yet another training course we have to take.

The last ethics handbook we got actually had a footnote stating that the zero-tolerance policy doesn't apply to upper management, provided the board approves the action. Fucking crooked hypocrites.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31876216)

ditto @ Intel.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (1)

Ruvim (889012) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876470)

Yes, but were those training material in Russian?

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (1)

jayveekay (735967) | more than 4 years ago | (#31877158)

As a former HP employee myself, I concur.

However, I would like to add that at this time this Russian bribery situation is an alleged crime, not a proven one. If the source of the alleged evidence of wrongdoing is the Russian government, then I really don't know what to believe, since I don't believe that they have a lot of integrity or credibility in law enforcement.

Re:Not following their own Ethics and Compliance (1)

joebagodonuts (561066) | more than 4 years ago | (#31878712)

The only reason for the yearly Ethics and Compliance refreshers is to remind the employees of what the Board members DON'T do. I'm always sure to remind them about that when they ask if I think the training is helpful. Lot's of resources being used to address an issue (or issues) with the leadership, rather than the rank and file.

Although, in fairness, the actions being investigated were taken in 2000. The relevant contract completed in 2007. The emphasis on yearly ethics training didn't come about until the pretexting controversy in '06.

IT'S A TRAP!!! (1)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#31875484)

Bribe prosecutor's office to get contract and get prosecuted by the office.

Somebody needs to up their bribe-fu.

thats normal procedure (1)

FudRucker (866063) | more than 4 years ago | (#31876178)

in the USA that is normal, it is called campaign contributions, or business investments. isn't capitalism grand?; where everything has a price (even your soul)

Building trust together (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31876272)

Seems like someone missed the annual Standards of Business Conduct [hp.com] training.

From page 12...

We do not bribe
> Do not offer or provide bribes or kickbacks to win
business or to influence a business decision--
anywhere on anything.
> Use agents and distributors only after they have
passed our due diligence process to ensure that our
commissions or fee arrangements will not be used as
bribes on our behalf.

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