The New York Times reports that Biomet’s federal probation was set to expire next week, but new evidence of foreign bribery has extended it by a year. During that time, the Justice Department will investigate the issue.
Additionally, the Justice Department will be looking into whether Biomet was involved in the bribery of government officials in Mexico and Brazil. The company settled a bribery case in 2012 for $17 million, according to NYT. Biomet also entered into a so-called deferred prosecution that withholds criminal charges if the company does not commit any wrongdoing during three years of probation.
NYT reports that the extended probation is bad news for Biomet’s reputation, since prosecutors believe the new evidence is enough to pursue a fuller investigation. “The D.O.J. has informed Biomet that it retains its rights under the D.P.A. to bring further action against Biomet relating to the conduct in Brazil and Mexico,” Biomet said a regulatory filing late Tuesday, adding, “The D.O.J. could, among other things, revoke the D.P.A. or prosecute Biomet and/or the involved employees and executives.”
“Make no mistake: The criminal division will not hesitate to tear up a D.P.A. or N.P.A. and file criminal charges where such action is appropriate and proportional to the breach,” said Leslie R. Caldwell, head of the Justice Department’s criminal division, according to NYT. “Just like an individual on probation faces a range of potential consequences for a violation, so, too, does a bank that is subject to a D.P.A.”
These issues were reported by a whistleblower via an anonymous email. The whistleblower stated that Biomet hired distributors to sell orthopedic devices and that those distributors were “paying kickbacks” to government doctors