A former executive at Commonwealth Bank of Australia has been charged with bribery after he allegedly awarded a contract to a U.S. technology company owned by Computer Sciences Corp. in return for a payment.
Keith Hunter, a 61-year-old American living in Sydney, was arrested Tuesday and charged with two counts of bribery, New South Wales state police said in a statement. He pleaded not guilty when he appeared in court Wednesday and was released on bail.
Officers working with the FBI have frozen $1.5 million in suspected corrupt payments and want to question another former senior IT manager at the bank, who is also American and now overseas. Commonwealth Bank, which reported the matter to police earlier this year after an internal probe, said it was fully cooperating with the investigation.
"We have no tolerance for any illegal activity by any employee and we take every situation seriously," the bank said in a statement.
CSC said it has started its own investigation into the matter involving California-based cloud management company ServiceMesh, which it bought in late 2013.
"We take this matter very seriously and will cooperate fully with all relevant authorities," Falls Church, Virginia- based Computer Sciences said in an e-mailed statement. "CSC strives to conduct its business globally with the highest degree of integrity and will ensure that these concerns are thoroughly and promptly addressed."
Suspicious payments were deposited into the bank accounts of two of Commonwealth Bank's senior IT staff, police said.
Detectives allege they were "involved in a corrupt relationship" with the firm and gave it a lucrative contract without a public tender process.