The National Division of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police has charged two U.S. citizens – Robert Barra and Dario Bernini, former CEO and COO of CryptoMetrics Inc. – and a U.K. national – Shailesh Govindia, one of the company’s agents – with violating Canada’s Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act. CryptoMetrics Inc. is the U.S. parent company of CryptoMetrics Canada. Mr. Govindia was further charged with one count of fraud. Allegations suggest that the men were part of a failed bribery scheme by CryptoMetrics Canada to bribe Indian officials to obtain an Air India contract worth a reported U.S. $100 million.
An Ottawa court previously convicted an agent for CryptoMetric’s Canada, Nazir Karigar, for conspiring to bribe Indian officials. Mr. Karigar was the first individual convicted under the CFPOA and received a three-year prison term for his part in the bribery scheme.
Commanding Officer of the National Division Gilles Michaud commented, “We have a mandate to investigate domestic and international allegations of corruption of foreign public officials. This investigation demonstrates the RCMP’s commitment to combating international corruption.”
This case signifies a high water mark for Canada, which has been criticized by the OECD Working Group on Bribery for its lackluster efforts to prosecute foreign bribery.
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