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Innospec Ex-CEO Pleads Guilty to U.K. Bribery Charges

Former Innospec Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Paul Jennings pleaded guilty today to trying to bribe Indonesian and Iraqi government officials to win contracts.

Dennis Kerrison, another former CEO at the company, and Miltos Papachristos, the former regional sales director for the Asia-Pacific region at Innospec, both pleaded not guilty to a charge brought by the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office of attempting to bribe Indonesian officials to win contracts to supply the fuel additive tetraethyl lead. The pleas were entered at a hearing today at a London criminal court and Kerrison and Papachristos will face trial next year.

Kerrison, of Surrey, England, was CEO of the company under its previous name, Octel Corp., according to the SFO. The charges cover a period from 2002 until 2008.

Innospec, a producer of fuel additives and specialty chemicals, agreed to pay more than $40 million in fines after pleading guilty in the U.K. and U.S. in 2010 to paying bribes overseas to secure sales contracts. The bribes were paid when the sale of tetraethyl lead was becoming less lucrative for the company as governments encouraged the use of unleaded gasoline, the SFO said in court at the time.

David Turner, a former sales and marketing director for tetraethyl lead at Innospec in the U.K., who was also charged in the case, pleaded guilty in January to three counts of conspiracy to corrupt. He admitted to bribing officials of Indonesia and Iraq, the SFO said.

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