Business

Ralph Lauren settles foreign bribery case

ALBANY, N.Y. — Ralph Lauren Corp. settled Justice Department and Securities and Exchange Commission allegations that bribes were paid to Argentine import officials, agreeing to give up more than $700,000 of illicit profits and pay an $882,000 penalty, federal authorities said Monday.

The New York-based apparel­ company promptly reported the violations from 2005 to 2009 after discovering them in 2010, terminated culpable employees and a third-party agent, and shut down its offices and stores in Argentina, officials said. Lauren won’t be prosecuted under agreements for maintaining risk assessment plans and training employees about the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which it’s accused of violating.

Advertisement

‘‘The [non-prosecution agreement] in this matter makes clear that we will confer substantial and tangible benefits on companies that respond appropriately to violations and cooperate fully with the SEC,’’ said George Canellos, acting director of its enforcement division.

The SEC said bribes of $593,000 were paid over four years through the company’s customs broker to get products into Argentina without paperwork and avoid inspection of prohibited products. The violations were found when the company adopted measures to improve its worldwide internal controls.

Get Business Headlines in your inbox:
The Globe's latest business headlines delivered every morning, Monday through Friday.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

US Attorney Loretta Lynch in New York said the agreement acknowledges that the manager of the Lauren subsidiary in Argentina bribed customs officials to get goods into the country, disguising them by funneling money through a customs clearance agency.

The corporation agreed to cooperate with the Justice Department, report periodically on its compliance efforts, and continue internal controls to prevent violations. If Lauren abides by the deal, it will not be prosecuted, according to Lynch and Assistant Attorney General Mythili Raman.

‘‘Of course the company did do all the right things when it surfaced to make sure it will not happen anywhere else,” attorney Thomas Hanusik said. ‘‘We’ve ceased operations in Argentina.’’

Advertisement

Hanusik said the company reported preliminary findings of its internal investigation to federal authorities within two weeks of discovering them.

Associated Press

Loading comments...
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to Globe.com for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.