Finmeccanica board meets to discuss leadership

AP News
Posted: Feb 13, 2013 12:57 PM

MILAN (AP) — Shares in Italian aerospace and defense giant Finmeccanica closed down 4 percent ahead of an emergency board meeting to discuss governance following the arrest of the chief executive.

The board was meeting Wednesday evening following the arrest of CEO Giuseppe Orsi, who is under investigation for the alleged payment of bribes to secure a €560 million ($755 million) contract to sell 12 helicopters to India. Orsi, who has been jailed, denies wrongdoing. The chief of Finmeccanica's unit AgustaWestland has been placed under house arrest.

Shares in Finmeccanica, which is 30 percent state-owned, dropped 4 percent to €4.23. They have dropped by about half in the last three years as the company has been targeted in corruption investigations.