March 17, 2020

Siemens Argentina executive avoids imprisonment for FCPA violation

On March 13, 2020, the US District Court of the Southern District of New York sentenced Andres Truppel, the former Chief Financial Officer of Siemens S.A. – Argentina (Siemens Argentina), to no prison time for his 2015 guilty plea to charges of wire fraud and conspiring to violate the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).  In his sentencing submission statement, Truppel asked to receive no prison time, stating that he had acknowledged his participation in a scheme to pay millions of dollars to Argentine officials to secure Siemens AG (Siemens), a German multinational conglomerate, a $1 billion contract to produce national identity cards for Argentina.  Truppel also noted that he had cooperated with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) throughout its investigation and had voluntarily submitted to US jurisdiction despite having the option to take refuge in Germany, where he holds citizenship, to avoid extradition.  The DOJ separately submitted a letter acknowledging that Truppel had provided “substantial assistance,” and asking that this be taken into account when determining his sentence.

In December 2008, Siemens, and various subsidiaries (including Siemens Argentina), pleaded guilty in federal court to FCPA-related violations in at least ten countries and agreed to pay a fine of over $450 million to the DOJ.  At the same time, Siemens agreed to disgorge $350 million in ill-gotten profits as part of a civil resolution with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, and agreed to pay an $800 million fine to resolve similar charges with the Munich Public Prosecutor’s Office.

DOJ Press Release | SDNY Judgment