R-R declines to comment on bribery claims
DERBY aero engine-maker Rolls-Royce has declined to comment on claims that it paid bribes to an executive involved with two Chinese airlines.
According to national newspaper reports, postings by a blogger operating under the pseudonym of "soardingdragon" claimed that the executive accepted payments while working for Air China and China Eastern.
It is alleged that they accepted payments for acting as an intermediary in engine deals worth a total of £1.25 billion with Air China in 2005 and China Eastern in 2010.
Last month the company, which has its civil aerospace division in Sinfin, revealed that the Serious Fraud Office had approached the company over allegations of malpractice in Indonesia and China, prompting the firm to conduct its own investigation through a law firm, Debevoise and Plimpton.
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In a statement last month, Rolls-Royce said the probe had found "matters of concern" in Indonesia and China, relating to "concerns about bribery and corruption involving intermediaries in overseas markets".
At the time, Rolls-Royce chief executive John Rishton said the company would not tolerate "improper business conduct".
The company said it was now up to the Serious Fraud Office to decide whether to launch its own investigation or take no further action.