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Lucent fires 4 execs over corruption audits

/ Source: The Associated Press

Telecommunications gear maker Lucent Technologies announced Tuesday it is firing four executives at its unit in China after finding possible violations of U.S. bribery laws.

Lucent said its investigation in China was among two dozen done at its foreign operations, prompted by bribery allegations involving its Saudi Arabian unit, which the company disclosed in August.

The company said it "found incidents and internal control deficiencies" in its operations in China that potentially involve Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations.

The nature and specifics of the potential violations were not disclosed. The Murray Hill-based company said it gave the findings to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Department of Justice.

Lucent, in a filing with the SEC, said it was removing the unit's president, chief operating officer, a marketing executive and a finance manager.

The filing did not name the executives, and Lucent spokesman William T. Price III declined to give their names.

Lucent said it believes the situation in China did not have an impact on its financial results, but said it cannot determine now what effect the matter might have on the company's future business operations in that country.