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Pfizer OKs settlement payment

November 21, 2011|Reuters

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer Inc. has agreed to pay more than $60 million to settle an investigation by U.S. regulators into whether the drug maker paid bribes to win business abroad, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The U.S. Justice Department announced in November 2009 that it would focus on prosecuting those in the pharmaceutical industry who try to bribe foreign officials for preferential treatment of their products, leading to a wide-ranging probe.

In its quarterly report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Nov. 10, Pfizer said it had reached agreements in principle with the SEC and the Justice Department. It did not specify how much it had agreed to pay to resolve the matter, but said it planned to announce final agreements in the fourth quarter.

Johnson & Johnson agreed to pay $78 million to settle similar U.S. and British charges this year. A Justice Department spokeswoman declined to comment. Officials at Pfizer and the SEC could not immediately be reached for comment.

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