John O'Shea: Energy Exec Acquitted on Mexican Bribery Charges

Keep Houston Press Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Houston and help keep the future of Houston Press free.

The executive of a Sugar Land-based company who's been accused of paying bribes to Mexican officials was acquitted without the defense even putting on a case.

John O'Shea, the former general manager of ABB Industries, was acquitted by U.S. District Judge Lynn Hughes after he said the government had failed to prove its charges.

O'Shea had been accused of paying bribes to officials of Mexico's Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) through a Mexican sales agent, Esimex, in trying to get a contract to build a "smart grid" in the country.

"Deflecting blame for bribery in corruption-ridden countries onto unknowing business executives is both Cervantian and unfair," defense attorney Joel Androphy said. "My hope is that our victory for Mr. O'Shea will encourage others wrongfully accused under the FCPA to fight the charges against them."

"We were prepared to try this case to verdict and show the public through expert testimony and Mr. O'Shea's own testimony that these charges were unfounded and that he is an honest man caught up in a terrible situation," said Sarah Frazier, also of the defense team.

In September 2010, the Department of Justice announced that Switzerland-based ABB Ltd. and two subsidiaries paid $58 million in criminal and civil penalties, disgorgement and interest, and that ABB Inc. pleaded guilty to two Foreign Corrupt Practices Act counts.

Follow Hair Balls News on Facebook and on Twitter @HairBallsNews.

Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.


Join the Press community and help support independent local journalism in Houston.