Paris, 3 October 2013, SHERPA.
This post was originally published on the SHERPA website.
Today’s announcement by the Paris Prosecutor to open a preliminary enquiry into financial crimes related to the construction of a motorway between Moscow and St. Petersburg has been welcomed by NGOs Sherpa, Russie-Libertés, CEE Bankwatch Network, MOBO Princip, and members of Russian civil society, who lodged the complaint in June 2013.
This investigation by the Paris Prosecutor is the first of its kind related to corruption of foreign public officials in Russia.
The Russian NGOs who participated in the initial investigations and ensured the submission of the complaint are particularly satisfied that the liable persons will be identified and potentially face judgment in France, as such processes are impossible in Russia.
This case is a reminder of the gulf that continues to grow among the virtuous rhetoric of multinational companies, their ethical commitments and the reality, thousands of miles from Paris, far from shareholders’ eyes, auditors and consumers”.
The NGOs expect police services to ensure that every possible step is taken to identify the people liable for the offences outlined in the complaint, without prejudice of the designation, which will be needed, of one or several investigating judges, given the complex and International character of offences reported.