Alcoa shareholder sues over bribery accusations
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An Alcoa shareholder filed a lawsuit today claiming that the company's handling of allegations of involvement in overseas bribery has harmed its value.
Catherine Rubery, of South Carolina, and her San Diego-based lawyers filed the suit in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh.
The bribery allegations stem from a four-year-old lawsuit by Middle Eastern firm Aluminum Bahrain B.S.C. Alba, as it is known, claimed that Alcoa paid $13.5 million to middleman Victor Dahdaleh, who is accused of converting that into bribes to officials of Alba and the government of Bahrain. Alba claimed that it then overpaid by around $400 million for alumina mined by Alcoa's Australian subsidiary.
The alleged transactions are the subject of a U.S. Department of Justice investigation, and Mr. Dahdaleh faces corruption charges in the United Kingdom.
"These wrongs ... have caused damage to Alcoa's reputation, goodwill, and standing in the business community," according to Ms. Rubery's complaint. "Moreover, these actions have exposed the Company to hundreds of millions of dollars in potential liability for violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act" and racketeering laws.
Sixteen people, including current and former Alcoa executives and Mr. Dahdaleh, are named as defendants. An Alcoa spokeswoman had no immediate comment.
First Published June 19, 2012 6:46 pm