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U.S. v. David H. Mead and Frerik Pluimers

 
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Saybolt - Mead, David H.
:
DOJ Criminal
:
April 17, 1998
:
U.S. v. David H. Mead and Frerik Pluimers
:
U.S. v. David H. Mead and Frerik Pluimers, Cr. No. 98-240-01, (D.N.J. 1998)
:
Utilities-Gas
:
Panama
:
1994; 1995
:
Panamanian government officials.
:
David H. Mead was the President and CEO of Saybolt, Inc; the Executive VP and Chief Executive of Saybolt North America, Inc. ("Saybolt N.A."), the parent company of Saybolt, Inc. Saybolt North America, Inc. was in turn a subsidiary of Saybolt International, a Dutch company.

The government's investigation of Saybolt began with allegations of data falsification at its lab facilities in Massachusetts. The company was in the process of being acquired by Core Laboratories N.V. and cooperated in this investigation. However, during the investigation, the EPA's criminal investigation division discovered illegal bribes made in Panama at the direction of Saybolt, Inc. that had not been previously disclosed to the government. These bribes were made to various Panamanian government officials in order to obtain a lease of a favorable location on the Panama canal. The payments were authorized at a board meeting held in New Jersey, attended by David H. Mead, CEO of Saybolt N.A. and director of Saybolt International who also supervised Saybolt de Panama, Frerick Pluimers, the chairman of the parent company, and Philippe Schreiber, a U.S. lawyer who was a director of Saybolt N.A. During the meeting, Schreiber advised the board that people went to jail for making these types of payments, and thereafter the company decided to make the payments using funds from the Dutch parent, rather than from the U.S. company, in an attempt to evade the FCPA. An employee of Saybolt, Inc. was sent to Panama to oversee the cash payment, which consisted of funds from Saybolt International rather than Saybolt N.A.
Mead was charged with violating and conspiring to violate the FCPA's anti-bribery provisions and subsequently convicted.
:
Aiding and abetting anti-bribery, Anti-bribery (Domestic Concern)
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Conviction, Fine, Probation
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Fine of $20,000.
:
20,000
:
4
:
With a criminal history category of I and a final offense level of 13 based on the amount of bribes, the sentencing range was 12-18 months. The Court, however, sentenced the defendant to a split sentence of 4 months imprisonment and 4 months home detention departing due to the illness of the defendant’s wife.
Note: The government, citing internal company documents estimating the value of the leasehold to the company’s business, argued for a higher specific offense characteristic. The Court, however, deemed this estimate speculative and used the value of the bribe ($50,000) instead.
:
Director of Domestic Concern, Domestic Concern, Officer of Domestic Concern
:
CEO, President
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Foreign
:
Contract Procurement/Retention, Tax
:
Not stated.
:
Cash, Wire/check
:
Direct
:
50,000
:
Panama
:
Netherlands
:
Mead's main defense during trial was that he did not know the $50,000 payment was illegal since it came from Saybolt's Dutch parent, Saybolt International.
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Yes
:
No