Novartis under Corruption Probe in Mexico

10 11 2010

IMSS, Mexico's centralized social security entity


Novartis Headquarters in Basel, Switzerland

The federal government of Mexico launched a criminal investigation for alleged corrupt practices of pharmaceutical Novartis. According to the note,


Mexican TV network Televisa on its Tuesday evening news broadcast presented an audio recording of an IMSS official negotiating the purchase of $80 million pesos ($6.5 million) worth of pharmaceuticals with Rafael Castro, Novartis’ laboratory director.

Novartis is one of the principal vendors for the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS, Mexican Social Security Institute), Latin America’s biggest centralized social security agency. IMSS runs a network of public hospitals, with more than 30,000 beds.

Would the U.S. Department of Justice have jurisdiction to investigate probable violations to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? The act has long reach, and the current White House administration views “widespread corruption as a violation of basic human rights.” This is just a question; let’s the FCPA experts answer it.