Andrew Williams, a director of the Center for the Study of Fiduciary Capitalism at Saint Mary's College in Moraga, was quoted in a Contra Costa Times in a story about a $1.1 million payment made by InVision Technologies to federal securities regulators. The payment settled a complaint that the company allowed improper payments to foreign officials in Asia.

The fierce competitive pressures of doing business overseas must not become an excuse for shoddy practices, Williams was quoted in the story.

"U.S. companies shouldn't do anything like bribing foreign officials to get or keep contracts," Williams said. "I understand this causes some difficulties for U.S. companies competing in foreign countries where bribery might be acceptable."

U.S. companies must rise above the obstacles and act responsibly, he said.

"This is part of the challenge of doing business globally, of dealing with different jurisdictions, and laws, and cultures," Williams said. "There is every reason that we should hold U.S. companies to a high standard of business ethics."

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