This month, a former PDVSA … First, Diaz acted as an agent for the Swiss Asphalt Company to pay commissions to a PDVSA official for every barrel of asphalt purchased from PDVSA. Meneses pled guilty on the same date but the plea agreement has not been released. According to the docket, Andrade pled guilty on the same day but the plea agreement has not been released. The single best resource for all things FCPA enforcement related is the Stanford Law School Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Clearinghouse, a collaboration with Sullivan & Cromwell LLC. On September 22, 2020, Sargeant Marine Inc. ("SMI"), an asphalt company incorporated and based in Boca Raton, Florida, pled guilty to conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act ("FCPA") in Brazil, Venezuela, and Ecuador. “Today’s resolution, together with charges the department has brought against individuals involved in Sargeant … Sargeant Marine’s guilty plea is another example of the FCPA’s effectiveness in prosecuting international bribery and fraud. The single best resource for all things FCPA enforcement related is the Stanford Law School Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Clearinghouse, a collaboration with Sullivan & Cromwell LLC. He is awaiting sentencing after paying US$300,000 in cash bail. Pleads Guilty and Agrees to Pay Over $16 Million in Criminal Fines to Resolve Foreign Bribery Case. Sargeant’s responsibilities included seeking, approving, and overseeing contracts with Petroleo Brasileiro SA (Petrobras), Brazil’s state-owned oil company, and Petróleos de Venezuela SA (PDVSA), Venezuela’s state-owned oil company. The Author gives his permission to link, post, distribute, or reference this article for any lawful purpose, provided attribution is made to the author. In 2014, Sargeant Marine bribed an officials at Ecuador’s state-owned oil company, Petroecuador, to secure a contract to supply asphalt. As part of the scheme, Sargeant Marine entered into sham consulting agreements with third-party intermediaries. On June 8, 2018, the DOJ filed a complaint against Meneses and on August 2, 2018, the DOJ filed a single count Information against Meneses alleging conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA. Troyano pled guilty on the same date but the plea agreement has not been released. On September 10, 2020, a criminal complaint was unsealed in federal court in the Eastern District of New York against a former PDVSA official with conspiracy to commit money laundering for his alleged role in Sargeant Marine’s Venezuela bribery scheme. This publication contains general information only and is based on the experiences and research of the author. Between 2010 and 2018, Sargeant Marine paid millions of dollars in bribes to foreign officials in Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador to secure contracts to purchase or sell asphalt to state-owned and state-controlled oil companies. Sargeant pled guilty on the same date but the plea agreement has not been released. As a result of the bribery scheme, Sargeant Marine secured contracts with a total value in excess of approximately $185 million. To date, there have been six guilty pleas sustained. Recently unsealed court filings indicate that Daniel Sargeant, who used to run Sargeant Marine, quietly pleaded guilty last December to conspiracy to commit money laundering and violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars Americans from paying overseas officials in exchange for business. On September 22, 2017, the DOJ filed a single count Information in the Eastern District of New York against Andrade alleging a conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA. According to the documents in this case, between 2012 and May 2018, Meneses conspired to pay bribes to various officials at PDVSA, to purchase asphalt from PDVSA, to acquire inside, non-public information to obtain an improper advantage in the purchase and sale of asphalt, and to recover certain late fees, called demurrage fees, owed by PDVSA to Swiss Asphalt Company, an entity related to Sargeant Marine. Troyano accepted bribes in the form of commissions for every barrel of asphalt purchased from PDVSA by an unnamed asphalt company. Join me tomorrow where I conclude with some lessons learned. (AP) — The parents of a 4-year-old Missouri girl allegedly killed by neighbors to remove a “demon” pleaded not guilty Monday to charges connected to the case. The Justice Department announced a guilty plea to FCPA charges by Sargeant Marine, Inc., a privately-owned company, based in Boca Raton, Florida. According to the documents in this case, between 2012 and 2018, Diaz engaged in two conspiracies to pay bribes to various officials at PDVSA. Finocchi pled guilty on the same day, but the plea agreement has not been released. A sixth individual, Roberto Finocchi, also a Sargeant Marine trader, pleaded guilty in November 2017 for his role in the Brazil scheme. One can only conclude that Sargeant Marine was one corrupt organization. The intermediaries used a portion of the commissions to pay bribes to Brazilian government officials on Sargeant Marine’s behalf, by wire to the officials’ offshore shell companies accounts or in cash payments made in Brazil. To disguise the names of the four PDVSA officials, members of the conspiracy used code names to hide the identities of the PDVSA officials who received the bribes, referencing them as “oiltrader,” “Tony,” and “Tony2.”  When referring to the confidential inside information was called “Chocolates.”. “With today’s guilty plea, Sargeant Marine has admitted to engaging in a long-running pattern of paying bribes to corrupt officials in three South American countries to obtain lucrative business,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. LOS ANGELES – A one-time resident of Santa Barbara County pleaded guilty today to a federal criminal charge for fatally shooting an elephant seal on a beach near San Simeon. Between 2010 and 2017, Andrade conspired to pay bribes to several Brazilian officials on behalf of Sargeant Marine and associated companies so that they could obtain and retain business with Petrobras. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America’s commodities markets. The intermediary then paid the Petroecuador official on Sargeant Marine’s behalf. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America's commodities markets. This month, a former PDVSA … Alejandra Montenegro Almonte Quoted on Sargeant Marine Guilty Plea in Anti-Corruption Report "More Petrobras Fallout: Sargeant Marine Pleads Guilty" Anti-Corruption Report. Recently unsealed court filings indicate that Daniel Sargeant, who used to run Sargeant Marine, quietly pleaded guilty last December to conspiracy to commit money laundering and violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars Americans from paying overseas officials in exchange for business. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader, ongoing crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America's commodities markets. On September 22, 2020, Sargeant Marine Inc. (“SMI”), an asphalt company incorporated and based in Boca Raton, Florida, pled guilty to conspiracy to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) in Brazil, Venezuela, and Ecuador. We rarely have seen a single Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) enforcement action generate so many individual criminal pleas. Staff Sgt. Daniel Sargeant was an executive and part owner of Sargeant Marine and its related companies from approximately 2006 through 2016. Jose Tomas Meneses worked as a trader at Sargeant Marine between 2012 and 2018. Roberto Finocchi worked as a trader for Sargeant Trading, Ltd. Co. and related companies from approximately 2006 through 2017. Recently unsealed court documents indicate that Daniel Sargeant, who ran Sargeant Marine, quietly pleaded guilty last December to conspiring to commit money laundering and violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which prohibits Americans from paying money. This publication is not a substitute for such legal advice or services, nor should it be used as a basis for any decision or action that may affect your business. Second, Diaz acted as an agent for Sargeant Marine to purchase asphalt from PDVSA, to acquire inside, non-public information to obtain an improper advantage in the purchase and sale of asphalt, and to recover certain late fees, called demurrage fees, owed by PDVSA to a Swiss asphalt company related to Sargeant Marine. 09.30.2020. Diaz pled guilty on the same date but the plea agreement has not been released. On March 28, 2018, the DOJ filed a two-count Information against Diaz alleging conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA. After receiving fake invoices, Sargeant Marine sent international wires from its bank accounts to offshore bank accounts maintained by shell companies connected to the bribery intermediaries. Jordan Gerbich, 30, formerly of Santa Maria, now a resident of Utah, pleaded guilty via videoconference to a single-count information charging him with taking a marine mammal. To date, there have been six guilty pleas sustained. Sargeant Marine Inc. recently pleaded guilty to conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, with the wrongdoing carried out by the company’s employees and agents in Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador. After resigning from PDVSA, Troyano acted as an agent to pay bribes on behalf of Sargeant Marine to officials at PDVSA. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! Chad Simon/Defense Department. Andrade facilitated bribe payments to at least two Petrobras officials and two Brazilian politicians by using, among other things, US and Swiss bank accounts and shell companies incorporated in the Marshall Islands. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America’s commodities markets. Roberto Finocchi, a Sargeant Marine trader, pleaded guilty in November 2017 for his role in the Brazil bribery scheme. Sargeant Marine, an asphalt shipping company based in Boca Raton, Florida, pleaded guilty to bribery schemes in three South American countries and agreed to pay a criminal fine of $16.6 million to resolve the charges. While none of the bribes were paid to U.S. officials or paid in the U.S., the FCPA allows the U.S. government to prosecute Sargeant Marine because it is publicly traded on the U.S. stock exchange. Luiz Eduardo Andrade worked as an agent for Sargeant Marine in Brazil from approximately the end of 2009 through at least early 2016. Recently, DOJ unsealed guilty pleas to charges by five individuals who participated in the bribery scheme. Gerbich admitted in his plea agreement that … Keysight Technologies Settles with OFAC for $473,157 for Violations of Iran Sanctions Program, Webinar: 2020 FCPA Enforcement and Compliance Review, The Justice Department announced a guilty plea to FCPA charges by Sargeant Marine, Inc., a privately-owned company, based in Boca Raton, Florida, Dancing Around the Edges: A Journey in the FCPA Guidance, The FCPA Guidance and Voluntary Disclosures, A Call to Arms: Conduct a Risk Assessment, Sidebars — Reflections on White Collar Law and Federal Crimes. The five individuals included: (1) Daniel Sargeant, a senior executive at Sargeant Marine; (2) Jose Tomas Meneses, a Sargeant Marine trader; (3 and 4) Luiz Eduardo Andrade and David Diaz, consultants who acted as intermediaries funneling bribes in Brazil and Venezuela; and (5) Hector Nuñez Troyano, a former PDVSA official who received bribes in connection with the Venezuela contracts. Between approximately 2010 and 2018, Sargeant conspired to pay bribes to foreign officials in Brazil and Venezuela in order to secure contracts and other benefits for Sargeant Marine. Andrade’s responsibilities included seeking contracts with Petrobras, for Sargeant Marine and its related companies. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America's commodities markets. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. Between 2012 and 2018, Sargeant Marine bribed four PDVSA officials in Venezuela in exchange for inside information and their assistance in steering PDVSA contracts to a Sargeant Marine nominee company for the purchase of asphalt. To date, there have been six guilty pleas sustained. COLE CAMP, Mo. Additionally, the Department announced, a criminal complaint was unsealed in federal court on Sept. 10 charging another former PDVSA official with conspiracy to commit money laundering, in part, for his alleged role in the Venezuela scheme. According to the documents in this case, between 2011 and 2018, Troyano was both a beneficiary and participant in two conspiracies to pay bribes to various officials at PDVSA. The bribes were made through intermediary consultants and shell companies and were made in order to obtain business for Sargeant Marine and its associated companies. Like the Brazil scheme, Sargeant Marine disguised the bribery payments to intermediaries by executing fake consulting agreements with a bribe intermediary and wiring commission payments into U.S. and offshore bank accounts controlled by the intermediary, who then made the bribery payments to PDVSA officials. On November 17, 2017, the DOJ filed a single count Information against Finocchi alleging conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA. Sargeant Marine – The Individual Guilty Pleas, Stanford Law School Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Clearinghouse, Daily Compliance News: October 1, 2020-the End of Diversity Training edition, Day 11 of One Month to Better 3rd Party Management-Auditing of Third Parties, FCPA Compliance Report-Episode 460- André H. Paris on the Brazilian Compliance Scene, FCPA Compliance Report-Episode 424, David Childers on the New ECI Self-Assessment Tool, FCPA Compliance Report-Episode 462- Philip Urofsky on the Shearman & Sterling 2020 FCPA Digest. On February 20, 2019, the DOJ initiated a case against Troyano filing a single count Information alleging conspiracy to commit money laundering. In Brazil, Sargeant Marine bribed a Brazil Minister, a high-ranking member of the Brazilian Congress and senior executives at Petrobras, the state-owned oil and gas company, to secure valuable contracts to sell asphalt. The author can be reached at tfox@tfoxlaw.com. Episode 175 — A Deep Dive into the Vitol FCPA Settlement, New Year Webinars: 2020 FCPA and OFAC Enforcement and Compliance Reviews. Recently unsealed court filings indicate that Daniel Sargeant, who used to run Sargeant Marine, quietly pleaded guilty last December to conspiracy to commit money laundering and violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars Americans from paying overseas officials in exchange for business. Sargeant Marine Inc., an asphalt company formerly based in Boca Raton, Florida, pleaded guilty today to conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and agreed to pay a criminal fine of $16.6 million to resolve charges stemming from a scheme to pay bribes to foreign officials in three South American countries. Sargeant Marine recently pled guilty to conspiracy to violate anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), a move that Alejandra Montenegro Almonte stated "can result in loss of business and serious … The Sargeant Marine Inc. (Sargeant Marine) case is an exception. The total criminal penalty was actually $90 million, but because of SMI’s “inability to pay” the … Sargeant Marine, an asphalt company, plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA and agreed to pay a fine of $16.6 million for bribery schemes in Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador. In Venezuela, Sargeant conspired to pay bribes to various PDVSA officials in order to, among other things: (a) purchase asphalt from PDVSA; (b) acquire inside, non-public information from PDVSA to obtain an improper advantage in the purchase and sale of asphalt; and (c) recover certain late fees, called demurrage fees, owed by PDVSA to a Swiss asphalt company related to Sargeant Marine. Recently unsealed court filings indicate that Daniel Sargeant, who used to run Sargeant Marine, quietly pleaded guilty last December to conspiracy to commit money laundering and violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which bars Americans from paying overseas officials in exchange for business. 1 Specifically, between 2010 and 2018, SMI agreed to offer, offered, and paid bribes to two Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. (" Petrobras") officials, two Brazilian politicians, four … Recently we saw one of the most blatant cases of bribery and corruption brought by the Department of Justice (DOJ) in the form of a guilty plea by Sargeant Marine Inc. (Sargeant Marine), an asphalt company, related to conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and agreed to pay a criminal fine of $16.6 million to resolve charges stemming … Two US soldiers pleaded guilty in a $3 million catfishing scheme. The Justice Department announced a guilty plea to FCPA charges by Sargeant Marine, Inc., a privately-owned company, based in Boca Raton, Florida. At PDVSA, Troyano was involved in the sale of asphalt. Between 2010 and 2017, Finocchi conspired with others to pay bribes to Brazilian government officials and Petrobras officials. The plea agreement by Sargeant Marine Inc. is part of a broader crackdown on corrupt dealings in South America’s commodities markets. The author, his affiliates, and related entities shall not be responsible for any loss sustained by any person or entity that relies on this publication. David Diaz worked as an agent in Venezuela for Sargeant Marine and a second unnamed asphalt company. On December 18, 2019, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a two count Information against Sargeant alleging conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA and conspiracy to commit money laundering. foreign officials in exchange for business. Before making any decision or taking any action that may affect your business, you should consult a qualified legal advisor. The following information came from the reference material from the site, which detailed the following guilty pleas from individuals in this matter. Sargeant Marine, an asphalt company, plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA and agreed to pay a fine of $16.6 million for bribery schemes in Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador. Sargeant Marine engaged a bribe intermediary with close ties to a decision-maker at Petroecuador and then paid commissions to the bribe intermediary in accordance with a sham consulting agreement. Earlier this week, the DOJ announced that Sargeant Marine Inc. (SMI – an asphalt company based in Florida) “pleaded guilty and agreed to pay $16.6 million to resolve foreign bribery charges stemming from conduct by the company and its employees and agents in Brazil, Venezuela and Ecuador.”. Sargeant Marine used the same means to carry out the scheme as it used in Brazil and Venezuela. The Sargeant Marine Inc. (Sargeant Marine) case is an exception. 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