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US Probe Of Lucent's China Operations Heats Up

Lucent has been pushing aggressively to gain an increased share of China's growing telecom equipment market in recent years, and has counted state-owned operators China Telecom, China Netcom and China Mobile among its customers.
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Sep 07, 2006
Telecom equipment maker Lucent Technologies said US regulators are likely to take action against the company following an investigation into its Chinese operations.

Lucent said that it has been notified by the Securities and Exchange Commission that investigators are recommending an "enforcement action" against the company to the SEC's leadership.

The telecom equipment maker said in the statement dated Wednesday that the probe was related to "a previously disclosed investigation of Lucent's operations in China under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA)."

The US government has previously used the act to charge American companies and executives with bribing foreign officials or businesses in order to obtain favorable contracts.

Lucent disclosed few other details about the government probe, but stressed that it was cooperating with the government.

The South China Morning Post newspaper has reported that Chinese anti-graft investigators have been scrutinizing multi-billion dollar deals Lucent and other foreign telecom equipment makers have obtained in China's vast telecom market.

Lucent has been pushing aggressively to gain an increased share of China's growing telecom equipment market in recent years, and has counted state-owned operators China Telecom, China Netcom and China Mobile among its customers.

The company's disclosure to investors came on the eve of a shareholder meeting Thursday in Wilmington, Delaware, at which shareholders will be voting on Lucent's proposed merger with Alcatel of France.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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