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U.S. v. James K. Tillery and Paul G. Novak

 
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Willbros - Tillery, James K.
:
DOJ Criminal
:
January 17, 2008
:
U.S. v. James K. Tillery and Paul G. Novak
:
U.S. v. James K. Tillery and Paul G. Novak, No. 4:08-cr-00022-1 (S.D. Tex. 2008)
:
Willbros International Inc. ("WII"), Tillery's former employer, sued Tillery and a former agent, Novak, for breach of fiduciary duty after it itself entered into a deferred prosecution agreement. WII seeks, inter alia, actual damages incurred by WII as a result of defendants' conduct, treble damages for violations of the RICO Act, and disgorgement of all amounts WII paid to defendants between 1999 and 2005. Willbros Int'l, Inc. v. Tillery, et. al., No. 4:08cv3725 (S.D. Tex. Dec. 23, 2008).
:
Energy (Non-Utility)-Oil & Gas-Other/Multi
:
Ecuador, Nigeria
:
2003; 2004; 2005
:
1) officials of state-owned Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation ("NNPC"); 2) officials of NNPC's subsidiary National Petroleum Investment Management Services ("NAPIMS"); 3) a senior official in the executive branch of the Nigerian federal government; 4) officials in the dominant political party in Nigeria; and 5) officials of state-owned PetroEcuador and its subsidiary, PetroComercial.
:
On January 17, 2008, a grand jury indicted Tillery on one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and two substantive counts of violating the FCPA. The indictment also charged one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. The indictment remained under seal until December 19, 2008, when U.S. authorities arrested his co-defendant, Novak, at a Houston airport. Tillery became a fugitive and his status is currently unclear. As of October 2010, Tillery had apparently been located by American law enforcement in Nigeria, but African media reported that a Nigerian judge blocked Tillery's extradition to the United States.

As alleged in a criminal indictment, James K. Tillery, a U.S. citizen, is a former officer and employee of Willbros International, Inc. ("WII") and another Willbros Group, Inc. ("WGI") subsidiary, Willbros USA, Inc. ("WUSA"). Although Tillery was an employee of WUSA as of 2002, he remained an officer of WII and his primary duties were in the international field, as reflected in his promotion to President of WII, with responsibility for global operations outside of North America. Paul G. Novak, also a U.S. citizen, represented two consulting companies that allegedly acted as conduits for corrupt payments authorized by WII employees to foreign officials in Nigeria. Tillery and others allegedly authorized Novak to enter into corrupt negotiations with, and make payments to, Nigerian officials who had influence over awarding government construction contracts to obtain and retain favorable treatment in oil and gas pipeline construction contract decisions for WII and WGI subsidiaries. By late 2004, more than $1 million in corrupt payments allegedly had been paid to Nigerian officials, with millions more to be paid under commitments made to Nigerian officials. From January to March 2005, during an internal investigation and after Tillery and Novak had left the company or were no longer retained, Tillery and Novak's co-conspirators are alleged to have fraudulently obtained approximately $1.85 million dollars in cash to fulfill a portion of the remaining commitments. The money was then provided to consultants for delivery to Nigerian officials. Tillery and Novak's co-conspirators included Jim Bob Brown and Jason Edward Steph - former WII employees who separately have pleaded guilty to FCPA violations, a Nigerian national who performed purported consulting services for one or more of Willbros' Nigerian subsidiaries, and Nigeria-based employees of a major German construction and engineering firm with whom Willbros' Nigerian subsidiaries had formed a consortium to acquire business.

Additionally, Tillery and Novak, along with several other individuals, allegedly agreed to make corrupt payments of at least $300,000 to Ecuadorian officials to obtain a contract for the rehabilitation of a gas pipeline for WII. Novak, at the direction of Tillery, allegedly made a $150,000 corrupt payment by wire transfer to an Ecuadorian bank account.
:
Anti-bribery (Domestic Concern), Conspiracy - Anti-Bribery
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Conspiracy - Money Laundering
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Fugitive
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If convicted of all charges, Tillery faces a sentence of up to 5 years on each of the 7 counts and fines of $250,000, or twice the pecuniary gain or loss from the offense, whichever is greater, for conspiring to violate the FCPA and for each violation of the FCPA; and $500,000 or twice the value of the funds involved in the transfer, whichever is greater, for the money laundering conspiracy violation.
:
Not stated.
:
0
:
Agent of Domestic Concern, Employee of Domestic Concern, Officer of Domestic Concern
:
Other Senior Officer, President
:
U.S.
:
Contract Procurement/Retention
:
390,500,000
:
Cash, Wire/check
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Direct, Sales Agent/Consultant
:
4,200,000
:
Ecuador, Nigeria
:
Ecuador, Lebanon
:
No