Cobalt International Energy Inc. said Tuesday it received a “Wells Notice” in connection with the Securities and Exchange Commission’s investigation of its operations in Angola and potential liabilities under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA).
In a securities filing, Cobalt said the SEC’s staff has made a preliminary determination to recommend that the agency institute an enforcement action, alleging violations of certain federal securities laws.
The FCPA outlaws bribes by U.S. public companies or their personnel to foreign officials to win or keep work or gain an unfair advantage.
The independent oil and gas producer said according to the Wells Notice, “the Staff may recommend that the SEC seek remedies that could include an injunction, a cease-and-desist order, disgorgement, pre-judgment interest and civil money penalties.”
In 2011, the SEC issed a formal order of investigation regarding Cobalt’s operations in Angola.
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