‘Bribes’ To Govt. Officials: Amazon Probes Law Firms, In-House Counsel

A probe under the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), online retailer Amazon is conducting an internal investigation into a whistle-blower complaint that has alleged bribing of government officials in India by some of its legal representatives. Responding to set of e-mail queries, asking the status of the probe, whether the company also planned to have an external agency look into the matter or Indian authorities were notified about the issue, an Amazon spokesperson wrote: “We have zero tolerance for corruption. We take allegations of improper actions seriously, investigate them fully, and take appropriate action. We are not commenting on specific allegations or the status of any investigation at this time”. 

A part of the legal fees by Amazon to one or more of its legal representatives have been “funnelled” into bribing government officials. The report said that while the internal investigation being carried out by Amazon was focused on the role played by the company’s senior legal counsel, who has been sent on a leave, and a Delhi-based independent lawyer, it was also conducting a broader investigation into the issue and was questioning its other legal representatives for the same. This includes law firm AZB & Partners.
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