Law360 (November 20, 2007, 12:00 AM EST) -- Swiss oil company Vitol SA on Tuesday pleaded guilty to charges of grand larceny related to the United Nations' scandal-plagued oil-for-food program in Iraq, agreeing to pay a total penalty of $17.5 million.
Vitol allegedly paid $13 million in kickbacks to Iraqi officials while participating in the oil-for-food program, intended to allow Iraq to sell oil internationally in exchange for humanitarian aid, according to District Attorney Robert Morgenthau. The kickbacks were paid as "surcharges," either by Vitol directly or through third parties, and were never disclosed to the U.N.
The company has agreed to pay $13 million into an international fund...
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