WASHINGTON In the last two months, at least five foreign companies have announced settlements or intentions to settle with U.S. authorities over bribery allegations arising under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act:
* On April 1, German car maker Daimler AG and three subsidiaries agreed to pay $185 million to settle allegations they bribed foreign officials in at least 22 countries in return for contracts to sell Daimler vehicles. Two of the subsidiaries pleaded guilty. Daimler and another subsidiary entered into deferred prosecution agreements.
* On March 18, British specialty chemical company Innospec Inc said it would pay $40.2 million to settle allegations it paid bribes to Iraqi and Indonesian government officials and violated the U.S. embargo against Cuba.
* On March 1, British defense contractor BAE Systems PLC pleaded guilty to lying to U.S. government agencies about its compliance with FCPA and settled for $400 million. While the company did not plead guilty to bribery as such, court documents outlined a long-running practice of making "suspicious payments" to officials in Saudi Arabia, the Czech Republic and Hungary.
* On February 19, Franco-American telecoms equipment maker Alcatel-Lucent said it had set aside 93 million euros to resolve a long-running investigation of bribe payments in Costa Rica, Taiwan and Kenya.
* On February 12, French engineering firm Technip set aside 245 million euros for possible fines resulting from a Nigeria bribery case.
(Reporting by Dan Margolies, editing by Dave Zimmerman)