June 4, 2019

Israeli infrastructure company alleged to have bribed African government officials

On May 26, 2019, the Israel Police announced that it and the Israel Securities Authority had completed an investigation into Israeli infrastructure company Shikun & Binui, Ltd., finding sufficient evidence to prosecute the Company and certain of its executives for allegedly paying millions of dollars in bribes to government officials in Africa. 
The investigation was conducted in both Israel and in Kenya (in cooperation with the Kenyan Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission), and included interviews of 19 public officials in Kenya, 50 suspects, and 34 witnesses.  The Israeli authorities alleged that, between 2008 and 2016, the Company—directly and through affiliated entities such as the Company’s Swiss subsidiary, AG SBI International—had paid millions of dollars in bribes to government officials in Africa, primarily in Kenya, in return for approximately $100 million in contracts.  Accordingly, the authorities concluded that there was sufficient evidence to charge the Company and several senior Company personnel with bribery, falsification of accounting records, conspiracy, obstruction of justice, and false financial reporting for the purpose of misleading investors.  The investigative file will now be transferred to Israel’s Tax and Economic Prosecutions Unit for further review.