August 26, 2019

SEC terminates bribery investigation into French environmental services company

In a French corporate filing on August 2, 2019, Veolia Environnement S.A., a French water and waste management company, reported that the US Securities and Exchange Commission had closed its investigation into possible improper payments and influence peddling by the Company’s Romanian subsidiary Apa Nova Bucuresti (ANB), and did not intend to recommend any enforcement actions.  

The Company explained that ANB and certain of its former managers were suspected of having made payments to companies controlled by three individuals; in exchange, these individuals were able to obtain favorable decisions for ANB from Bucharest’s public authorities, resulting in significant increases in water prices.  The Company noted that ANB and other Romanian subsidiaries of the Company remain under investigation by Romania’s anti-corruption authorities, and that both the Parquet National Financier in France and the US Department of Justice have opened investigations.