Two to face charges in Padma Bridge scandal
By Chris Sleight25 June 2012
Two former employees of SNC-Lavalin, Ramesh Shah and Mohammad Ismail, will face charges in a Toronto, Canada country for offences under the country's Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act in relation to the company's work on the Padma Bridge scheme in Bangladesh. They could face up to five years in jail and unlimited fines.
The charges follow an investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), which was started in September last year. SNC-Lavalin's had bid to act as the client's engineer on the project in a role that would have seen it supervise contractors carrying out the construction work. It has been alleged in the Bangladeshi press bribes were offered to six government officials to obtain the contract.
The 6.5 km Padma Bridge project has a total value of US$ 2.9 billion, US$ 1.2 billion of was provided in the form of a World Bank loan, and US$ 615 million of which came from the Asian Development bank (ADB).
As a result of the bribery allegations, a subsidiary of SNC-Lavalin has been temporarily barred from bidding on World Bank funded projects, pending the company's response to the findings of a confidential World Bank report.