Gun StunnerSomething dirty is going on at Dirty Harry's favorite gunmaker. Amaro Goncalves, Smith & Wesson's ( SWHC) vice president for sales, was one of 22 individuals indicted by the U.S. Justice Department Tuesday for violating federal bribery laws involving the sale of firearms. Goncalves and crew were charged with violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and conspiracy to commit money laundering involving the sale of guns and body armor. The indictments were filed in December after agents worked undercover last year to expose the ring. The individuals were arrested on Monday in Las Vegas and Miami.
L'affaire BoeingBoeing's ( BA) top man in France can't ink a deal to save his life, so there's only one thing left for him to say, " J'accuse!" Yves Galland, the president of Boeing France, accused the country's politicians of protectionism in its arms market on Tuesday, according to Reuters. To prove his protectionist point, Galland revealed that French defense authorities forced him to abandon his attempts to forge partnerships between Boeing and two French companies over a futuristic defense project. "I think France is extremely protectionist in military matters," said Galland, a former politician.
Carr's U-TurnWe sure hope everybody had their seatbelts on when Cadbury ( CBY) finally accepted Kraft's ( KFT) offer, because Cadbury chairman Roger Carr made one heckuva U-turn. After months of denigrating Kraft's overtures, Cadbury agreed to an 11.5 billion pounds ($19.5 billion) takeover this week. The British chocolate-maker finally acquiesced to a raised bid of 840 pence ($13.78) per share, comprised of 500 pence cash and 0.1874 new Kraft shares for each Cadbury share. Kraft's winning bid is 9% higher than its previous 770 pence offer and a 50% increase over Cadbury's market value before Kraft launched its assault on the confectionary company last September. "We believe the offer represents good value for Cadbury shareholders ... and will now work with the Kraft Foods' management to ensure the continued success and growth of the business," Carr said on Tuesday.
AIG Strikes AgainAIG ( AIG) may be a multibillion-dollar liability to the U.S. taxpayer, but to the Five Dumbest Lab, the failed insurer is the gift that keeps on giving. Berkshire Hathaway's ( BRK-A) General Re division agreed to pay $92.2 million on Wednesday to settle accusations that it "knowingly provided substantial assistance" to both AIG and Prudential ( PRU) in connection with their own securities violations. The U.S. government alleged that the reinsurer used fraudulent transactions to help manipulate AIG and Prudential's financial statements. According to the complaint, General Re entered into two sham reinsurance transactions in 2000 that allowed AIG to falsely report increases in both loss reserves and premiums written. The SEC alleges they did this to shore up the company's financials after analysts criticized AIG for declining loss reserves.