UPDATE 2-Ex-Innospec CEO settles SEC foreign bribery case

Mon Jan 24, 2011 2:07pm EST

* Ex-CEO Jennings to pay fine, no admission of wrongdoing

* Innospec had agreed to $40.2 mln settlement last March (Adds details from complaint, earlier Innospec settlement)

By Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK, Jan 24 (Reuters) - A former Innospec Inc (IOSP.O) chief executive has settled a U.S. regulator's charges that he authorized the specialty chemicals company to pay bribes to Iraqi and Indonesian officials.

Paul Jennings, the former chief executive, will pay about $229,000 to resolve U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission civil charges that he approved the payouts to win contracts, and violated the federal Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the regulator said.

The payment includes a $100,000 fine and the forfeiting of about $129,000 of bonuses plus interest tied to the success of sales of a fuel additive, which Innospec obtained through bribery, the SEC said. Jennings did not admit wrongdoing.

Jay Holtmeier, a lawyer for Jennings, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

According to a complaint filed on Monday in the Washington, D.C. federal court, Jennings "actively participated" in bribery starting in 2004, when he was chief financial officer, and continuing after he became chief executive the next year.

Last March, Innospec agreed to pay $40.2 million to settle related U.S. and British charges, and pleaded guilty to a 12-count U.S. criminal information. [ID:nN18236738]

The Littleton, Colorado-based company admitted to bribing Iraqi oil officials, defrauding the United Nations through its Oil for Food Program and selling chemicals to Cuban power plants in violation of a U.S. embargo.

The SEC said Innospec made $6.35 million of illegal payments from 2000 to 2008 in exchange for contracts generating $60.1 million of profit and $176.7 million of revenue.

Jennings was Innospec's chief executive from 2005 to 2009.

In afternoon trading, Innospec shares were up 9 cents at $19.55 on the Nasdaq.

The case is SEC v. Jennings, U.S. District Court, District of Columbia, No. 11-00144. (Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; editing by Andre Grenon and Gerald E. McCormick)