VENTURES AFRICA – The global oil-field services firm, Schlumberger, has arranged to shell out $232.7 million for breaching US economic sanctions in Iran and Sudan. The payment is part of the administration’s comprehensive clampdown on companies doing business with countries it has pronounced as off limits.
“As part of a plea agreement with the Justice Department, Schlumberger will pay a $155.1 million criminal fine—the biggest criminal fine ever imposed for a US sanctions violation—and forfeit $77.6 million in illegally obtained profits,” read the WSJ report. “Schlumberger…will also plead guilty to conspiring to violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, or IEEPA, which enables the government to block transactions involving countries under sanctions.”
The arrangement, which has not been approved yet, brings to a close the US Justice Department and Commerce Department’s six-year probe.
Specifics of the arrangement between government lawyers and Schlumberger were concluded on Wednesday this week, the newspaper reported, citing a person closer to the matter.
Schlumberger told WSJ that it had made fitting developments to tackle the issues unearthed by the probe. It added that it had stopped operations in Iran and Sudan. “Schlumberger is satisfied that this matter is finally resolved,” the company spokesman told WSJ.