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Smith & Nephew Reaches Settlement With US Government

LONDON, Feb. 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Smith & Nephew plc (LSE: SN, NYSE: SNN), the global medical technology business, announces that it and its U.S. subsidiary, Smith & Nephew, Inc., have reached settlements with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) in connection with their Foreign Corrupt Practices Act investigation of the medical device industry. Smith & Nephew has committed to pay $22,226,799 in fines and profit disgorgement, maintain an enhanced compliance programme, and appoint an independent monitor for at least 18 months to review and report on its compliance programme. The Group provided for this payment in its earnings for the fourth quarter of 2011.

Smith & Nephew and other medical device companies were asked by the SEC and DOJ in late 2007 to look into possible improper payments to government-employed doctors and voluntarily report any issues. Smith & Nephew found and reported evidence of improper payments by a distributor in Greece that had been appointed by Smith & Nephew subsidiaries and was terminated in 2008. The individuals implicated are no longer associated with the Group.

"We have what I believe to be a world-class compliance programme, having enhanced it significantly since this investigation began in 2007," commented Olivier Bohuon, Chief Executive Officer of Smith & Nephew.  "These legacy issues do not reflect Smith & Nephew today. But they underscore that we must remain vigilant every place we do business and let nothing compromise our commitment to integrity."

About Smith & Nephew

Smith & Nephew is a global medical technology business dedicated to helping improve people's lives.  With leadership positions in Orthopaedic Reconstruction, Advanced Wound Management, Sports Medicine, Trauma and Clinical Therapies, Smith & Nephew has almost 11,000 employees and a presence in more than 90 countries. Annual sales in 2011 were nearly $4.3 billion.  Smith & Nephew is a member of the FTSE100 (LSE: SN, NYSE: SNN).

Forward-looking Statements

This document may contain forward-looking statements that may or may not prove accurate. For example, statements regarding expected revenue growth and trading margins, market trends and our product pipeline are forward-looking statements. Phrases such as "aim", "plan", "intend", "anticipate", "well-placed", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "target", "consider" and similar expressions are generally intended to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from what is expressed or implied by the statements. For Smith & Nephew, these factors include: economic and financial conditions in the markets we serve, especially those affecting health care providers, payors and customers; price levels for established and innovative medical devices; developments in medical technology; regulatory approvals, reimbursement decisions or other government actions; product defects or recalls; litigation relating to patent or other claims; legal compliance risks and related investigative, remedial or enforcement actions; strategic actions, including acquisitions and dispositions, our success in integrating acquired businesses, and disruption that may result from changes we make in our business plans or organisation to adapt to market developments; and numerous other matters that affect us or our markets, including those of a political, economic, business or competitive nature. Please refer to the documents that Smith & Nephew has filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission under the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, including Smith & Nephew's most recent annual report on Form 20-F, for a discussion of certain of these factors.

Any forward-looking statement is based on information available to Smith & Nephew as of the date of the statement. All written or oral forward-looking statements attributable to Smith & Nephew are qualified by this caution. Smith & Nephew does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement to reflect any change in circumstances or in Smith & Nephew's expectations.

SOURCE Smith & Nephew
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