Chevron to pay $30m in oil-for-food settlement

Chevron has agreed to pay $30-million to resolve criminal and civil liabilities related to procurement of oil under the United Nations oil-for-food programme, United States prosecutors said on Wednesday.

Chevron, the number-two US oil company, obtained Iraqi oil under the programme from third parties that paid secret, illegal surcharges to the former government of Iraq, prosecutors said.

Chevron will not be prosecuted and will continue to cooperate with investigators, prosecutors said.

Chevron could not be reached immediately for comment.

The agreement was the result of a joint investigation by the US attorney’s office and the Manhattan district attorney’s office. The FBI, the New York Police Department and the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (Ofac) also took part in the probe.

Under the agreement, Chevron will pay $20-million in forfeiture to the US attorney’s office, $5-million to the Manhattan district attorney’s office and $2-million to Ofac. The company will also pay a penalty of $3-million to the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

The oil-for-food programme was established to help Saddam Hussein’s Iraq sell oil to buy humanitarian supplies while it was otherwise under UN sanctions due to its 1990 invasion of Kuwait.

But a UN-commissioned inquiry headed by former US Federal Reserve chairperson Paul Volcker found the programme was corrupted by 2 200 companies in 66 countries that paid $1,8-billion in kickbacks to Iraqi officials to win supply deals.—Reuters

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