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Two former execs of O.C. firm plead guilty in foreign bribery case

April 18, 2012|By Stuart Pfeifer, Los Angeles Times

Two former executives of an Orange County company pleaded guilty to foreign corruption charges for bribing overseas government officials in order to win sales contracts.

Stuart Carson, former president of Control Components Inc., and Hong "Rose" Carson, the Rancho Santa Margarita company's former director of sales in China and Taiwan, are scheduled to be sentenced in October.

The Carsons, who are married and live in San Clemente, pleaded guilty to bribery charges Monday during a hearing in Santa Ana before U.S. District Judge James V. Selna.

Control Components manufactures and sells valves used in nuclear, oil, gas and power generation around the world.

Stuart Carson, 73, faces a sentence of up to 10 months in federal prison. His 48-year-old wife faces a sentence of probation with up to six months of home confinement.

In 2009, the Carsons and four other former CCI executives were charged in a 16-count indictment that accused the company of bribing foreign government officials in more than 30 countries, including Brazil, China, India, South Korea, Malaysia and the United Arab Emirates. The bribes helped the company generate more than $46 million in sales, prosecutors said.

Under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, it is a crime for U.S. companies and their employees to bribe government officials overseas.

In 2009, the company pleaded guilty to foreign corruption charges. A judge fined the company $18.2 million and ordered it to implement a program to make sure it no longer violated foreign corruption laws.

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