Qualcomm settles corruption charges in China by paying $7.5 mn

Qualcomm leads smartphone applications processor market
Chipset maker Qualcomm has settled the alleged corruption charges in China by agreeing to pay settlement charges of $7.5 million.

Qualcomm, while announcing the civil penalty to resolve the corruption related matter in China, did not admit or deny findings of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with respect to its Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) investigation.

SEC said Qualcomm, the makers of Snapdragon chipsets for smartphones, gave event tickets and gifts or paid for travel to employees of China government owned entities or government agencies in China. Qualcomm hired children or friends of employees of state-owned entities or ministries in China on certain occasions.

The corruption charges assume importance because Qualcomm has already paid huge funds to settle investigation into its certain business practice in China. Incidentally, China is one of the top markets for Qualcomm’s 3G and 4G chips.

“This is not a criminal action, and the U.S. Department of Justice recently closed its investigation on these matters without taking any action. The SEC’s order detailing this settlement relates to conduct prior to 2012 and completely resolves the investigation previously disclosed by the company in its public filings,” said Qualcomm.

“We remain committed to ethical conduct and compliance with all laws and regulations, and will continue to be vigilant about FCPA compliance,” said Don Rosenberg, general counsel of Qualcomm, in a statement.

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