Did Olympic Medal Maker Bribe Its Way Into Beijing Games?
Looking to get a leg up in its biggest market, BHP Billiton spent millions to become the Diversified Metals and Minerals Sponsor of the Beijing Olympics, but more than four years after the Games' conclusion the Australian mining multinational is now the subject of a U.S. Justice Department investigation. According to the Associated Press, investigators are trying to determine whether Chinese government officials received bribes that could have resulted in the company obtaining the sponsorship with BOCOG, The Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games.
The company said it is cooperating with investigators, but denied all bribery allegations in a written statement.
BHP Billiton provided the raw materials to make each of the 6,000 gold, silver and bronze medals won at the Games. The Melbourne-based company is the world's largest mining company employing over 100,000 people to produce major commodities, including aluminium, copper, energy coal, iron ore, manganese, metallurgical coal, nickel, silver and uranium.