After reports earlier this week revealed that Russian law enforcement officials raided the office of Hewlett-Packard in Moscow comes news that it was part of an investigation into a corporate bribery scandal.
HP is alleged to have set up shell companies in order to funnel ore $10 million in bribes in order to win a contract with the Russian prosecutor general's office to set up a secure computer system.Three former HP employees are currently under investigation, including the head of sales in Russia and the head of European equipment sales.
The news couldn't have come at a worse time for former HP CEO Carly Fiorina, who was chief executive at the company during the time the suspected bribery scheme played out.
Fiorina is currently running a campaign to secure the Republican party nomination to run against U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer in the fall.
The candidate has denied that she knew anything about the incident at the time, and had she known, the parties responsible would have been summarily fired.
A spokesperson for HP sent the following statement via email in response to the story:
This is an investigation of alleged conduct that occurred almost seven years ago, largely by employees no longer with HP. We are cooperating fully with the German and Russian authorities and will continue to conduct our own internal investigation.
The facts have clearly demonstrated that the criminal investigation is focused on alleged activities that took place seven years ago in Germany and Russia by regional employees. To suggest that Carly Fiorina, or any other senior executive in Palo Alto then or now, was knowledgeable of these alleged activities is wrong and not supported by the facts.
Jackson West figures Fiorina was too busy hammering out the details on that questionable purchase of Compaq.