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Italian aerospace giant boss arrested on graft charges

Posted on Feb 12, 07:14PM | IANS

Rome, Feb 12 : Police have arrested the chief executive of Italian aerospace and defence firm Finmeccanica on corruption charges relating to a deal with India worth over 500 billion euros.

Giuseppe Orsi has been under investigation for embezzlement for several months. He has always denied any wrongdoing and has vowed to clear his name.

Prosecutors allege he profited illegally from the sale of 12 helicopters to India.

Italy's prime minister, Mario Monti, said in an interview with Italian television: "There is a problem with the governance of Finmeccanica at the moment and we will face up to it."

"Magistrates will do their work. I'm sure they will do it thoroughly and in the best way possible."

Arrest warrants have been issued for two people living in Switzerland.

India's foreign ministry said it had not been informed of the raid and had earlier asked for details of the probe but were told the Italian government could not provide any information as it was a "judicial process".

The Italian government owns about 30 percent of Rome-based Finmeccanica.