Calgary-based company guilty of corruption charge

Calgary-based Griffiths Energy International Inc. pleaded guilty to a charge under the Corruption of Public Foreign Officials Act in relation to some contract dealings in the African country of Chad.

Griffiths Energy International handed over millions of shares and $2 million in cash to the wife of Canada's ambassador to Chad.

The company was trying to secure an oil and gas contract in the impoverished African nation.

Griffiths was formed in 2009, and new management took over in 2011 and was preparing an initial public offering when it discovered the illegal contracts.

The company contacted the RCMP and provided thousands of pages of documents to investigators.

A guilty plea was entered in a Calgary courtroom Tuesday morning. It's only the fourth time a company has been charged under Canada's Corruption of Public Foreign Officials Act.

Griffiths Energy and the Crown have agreed on a $10.3-million fine, but the case has been adjourned until Friday for a decision in the Court of Queen's Bench.

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