Feeds

Saudi firm accuses Lucent of bribery

Baksheesh charges

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications

A Saudi Arabian telecommunications group last week filed a lawsuit accusing Lucent of bribing a high-ranking government official to gain business in the Middle Eastern kingdom.

In a lawsuit filed in the New York District Court on Friday, the National Group for Communications and Computers alleges that Lucent and Swiss company ACEC lavished a former Saudi minister with bribes worth an estimated $15 million between 1995 and 2002.

Ali Al-Johani, a former minister of Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Post Telephone and Telegraph, received cash payments, medical expenses, hotel accommodation and free use of private jets in return for pushing the government-controlled Saudi Telecom Company to select equipment supplied by Lucent and ACEC, the suit alleges. As minister, Al-Johani served as chairman of the Saudi Telecom Company over the period on question.

National Group further alleges that it suffered damages if $63 million when the minister intervened to allow Lucent to back out of a contract with the Saudi firm.

National Group is seeking triple damages against Lucent under US racketeering laws.

Lucent has denied the charges against it, describing National Group's lawsuit as meritless. It has pledged to defend itself against the charges. Meanwhile, ACEC is reportedly under investigation by the Swiss government.

The curse of Murray Hill

After a protracted period of restructuring, which saw the loss of tens of thousands of jobs during the ongoing telecoms slump, Lucent was beginning to show signs of turning its business around and putting a difficult three years behind it.

Lucent has an outstanding track record for innovation but a series of poor business decisions and a long string of damaging incidents have brought what was (at least in 2000) a thriving business to relative penury. Securities and Exchange Commission accounting probes and allegations that workers had sold hi-tech secrets to the Chinese have turned Lucent, a former darling of Wall Street, into a tragi-comedy figure. These were followed by rows with its pensioners and shareholders.

To its credit, Lucent has somehow managed to navigate its way through these perilous waters.

Now, just when it looked like things were on the mend, along comes another banana skin. ®

Related Stories

Lucent wins $1bn Sprint gig, splashes more red ink
Lucent workers busted for inside tech swindle
Lucent to probe conduct of dead employee
SEC probes Lucent accounting practice
Lucent slashes 7,000 jobs
Lucent to cut another 15,000 to 20,000 jobs
Lucent to restate sales and cut 10,000 (full-time) jobs

The Power of One eBook: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Attack of the clones: Oracle's latest Red Hat Linux lookalike arrives
Oracle's Linux boss says Larry's Linux isn't just for Oracle apps anymore
THUD! WD plonks down SIX TERABYTE 'consumer NAS' fatboy
Now that's a LOT of porn or pirated movies. Or, you know, other consumer stuff
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.