Owens-Illinois launches internal probe for possible bribery

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    toledo blade

  • Owens-Illinois Inc. is investigating its overseas operations for possible violations of U.S. anti-bribery law.

    The investigation was noted in the company’s filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The filing, dated Oct. 25, stated that the investigation would probe potential violations of anti-bribery provisions of the United States Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FCPA’s books and records and internal controls provisions, the company’s own internal policies, and various local laws.

    The details of the investigation, along with the parts of the company being investigated, are not being released, said Stephanie Johnston, a company spokesman.

    “We most definitely are at a point where we’re working with the government on this and we’re awaiting their decisions and their plans on this,” she said.

    A timetable has not been set for when the matter could be resolved, Ms. Johnston said.

    The Perrysburg glass manufacturer made the SEC and the U.S. Department of Justice aware of the matter. The commission did not return calls for comment Monday.

    Mike Tobin, spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of Ohio, could not confirm or deny the existence of an investigation into Owens-Illinois.

    Ms. Johnston said the company is willing to work with the government in whatever way it can. The investigation, which was prompted by “a relatively recent occurrence,” is a first for the company, she said.

    “We voluntarily reported these violations to the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission,” Ms. Johnston said. “We’re fully ready to cooperate.”

    Contact Kris Turner at:

    kturner@theblade.com or