Former Embraer Sales Executive Pleads Guilty to Foreign Bribery and Related Charges

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A former sales executive for Brazil-based aircraft manufacturer Embraer S.A. has admitted his role in a scheme to pay bribes to a high-level Saudi Arabian official in exchange for help in securing Embraer’s sale of aircraft to Saudi Arabia’s national oil company.

Colin Steven, 61, a U.K. citizen residing in the United Arab Emirates, pleaded guilty to charges that include Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) violations, conspiracy to violate the FCPA, fraud, and money laundering.

According to the U.S. Justice Department, Embraer was awarded a contract to deliver three new aircraft valued at $93 million after Steven schemed to pay the official $1.5 million in bribe payments to guarantee the company would win. The payments were allegedly routed through a South African company disguised as commissions, then transferred to the official’s intermediary.

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