By Matthew Dalton and Benjamin Katz
PARIS–Airbus SE (AIR.FR) the world’s largest plane maker, made illicit payments to intermediaries to win contracts around the globe, according to allegations disclosed by a French judge as part of the company’s 3.6 billion-euros ($4 billion) settlement with U.S., UK and French prosecutors.
Airbus disclosed the deal to settle allegations earlier this week. The details of the allegations and the terms of the so-called deferred prosecution deal–the largest international settlement of bribery allegations ever–were disclosed Friday in a French court.
A French judge said the company is alleged to have made illicit payments to middlemen in China, South Korea, Russia, Japan, Colombia and other countries. Airbus disclosed a probe into payments about four years ago. At the time it said it took the matter to authorities itself after discovering irregularities in its submissions for state-backed funding guarantees.