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AstraZeneca agreed to pay $5.5 million to settle charges of violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, making it the latest global drug maker to face such accusations as part of a long-running probe by US authorities into companies that paid bribes in order to boost sales of their medicines.

In this instance, the company had been accused of making improper payments to health care providers in Russia and China, according to a cease-and-desist order released Tuesday by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.


From 2005 through at least 2010, AstraZeneca failed to maintain sufficient internal accounting controls to track interactions between its China and Russia subsidiaries, and government officials in those countries. Most of those officials were health care providers at state-owned and state-controlled entities, according to the SEC.

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