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U.S. v. Noriega et al.

 
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Lindsey Manufacturing Company -- Lee, Steve K.
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DOJ Criminal
:
October 21, 2010
:
U.S. v. Noriega et al.
:
U.S. v. Noriega, et al., 10-1031 (C.D. Ca. 2010)
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Convicted of one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and five counts of FCPA violations.

The district court issued a protective order that the government shall disclose to defense counsel materials obtained from the government's investigation into ABB Ltd.
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Mexico
:
2002; 2003; 2004; 2005; 2006; 2007; 2008; 2009
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Current and former director of operations of Comisiòn Federal de Electricidad (“CFE”), a state-owned electrical utility in Mexico.
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Steve K. Lee was Vice President and CFO of co-defendant Lindsey Manufacturing Company ("Lindsey Manufacturing") -- a manufacturer of emergency restoration systems (“ERSs”) and other equipment used by electrical utility companies -- headquartered in Azusa, California.
 
As demonstrated at trial, Steve Lee, and Keith E. Lindsey, the president and majority owner of the company, hired Enrique Faustino Aguilar Noriega ("Enrique Aguilar") and his wife Angela Aguilar, directors of Grupo Internacional de Asesores S.A. associated with Enrique Faustino Aguilar Noriega ("Enrique Aguilar") to provide sales representation with Comisiòn Federal de Electricidad (“CFE”), a state-owned utility in Mexico. Enrique Aquilar was hired based on his personal relationship with the utility’s director of operations. According to evidence presented at trial, between approximately February 2002 until March 2009, Lindsey Manufacturing paid Enrique Aguilar a 30% commission on contracts it obtained with CFE, knowing that a portion or all of the commission money would be used to pay bribes to foreign government officials. Lindsey and Lee would accordingly raise the price of contracts with CFE to account for the commission payments. Enrique Aguilar submitted false invoices to Lindsey Manufacturing, falsely describing the payments as 15% allocated to facts presented at trial, between 2002 and 2009, Lindsey Manufacturing wired approximately $5.9 million to a Global Financial brokerage account in Texas controlled by Enrique Aguilar for the purpose of paying bribes in exchange for the award of CFE contracts to Lindsey Manufacturing. Enrique Aguilar and his wife and co-defendant, Angela Aguilar allegedly used these funds to pay the credit card bills of the current director of operations, purchase him an $1.8M, 82 foot yacht and a Ferrari Spyder, and transfer $45,000 to his half brother, payments they falsely described as consultant fees. With respect to the former director of operations, the Aguilars allegedly wired $600,000 to relatives of the official, payments made pursuant to false sales representative agreements with the family members. Lee pleaded not guilty to the charges on October 22, 2010. He was released pending trial on a $50,000 bond.

On May 10, 2011, after trial was held, Lee was convicted on one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and five counts of FCPA violations. Before sentencing could take place, however, lawyers for Lindsey Manufacturing, Keith Lindsey, and Steve Lee moved to dismiss the indictments on the basis of intentional prosecutorial misconduct. The defendants alleged that the government allowed an FBI agent to make false statements to the grand jury, obtained search and seizure warrants using affidavits containing false statements, and failed to disclose exculpatory evidence as required under Brady v. Maryland. On December 1, 2011, the court granted defendants’ motion, citing multiple instances of misconduct by the government. The government filed a notice of appeal to the Ninth Circuit that same day.

In May 2012, the government withdrew its appeal.
:
Anti-bribery (Domestic Concern), Anti-bribery (Other Persons), Conspiracy - Anti-Bribery
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Dismissal
:
Not stated.
:
0
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Agent of Domestic Concern, Domestic Concern, Employee of Domestic Concern, Officer of Domestic Concern
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CFO, Other Senior Officer
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U.S.
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Contract Procurement/Retention
:
Not stated.
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Goods/Services, Wire/check
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Family Member, Sales Agent/Consultant
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5,949,079
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United States
:
Switzerland, United States
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foreign official
:

:
No