On March 2, law enforcement authorities entered three Peoria, Illinois, Caterpillar Inc. facilities, including the corporate headquarters, to execute a search and seizure warrant. The warrant was focused on the collection of documents and electronic information.
In a statement, Caterpillar said, “While the warrant is broadly drafted, we believe the execution of this search warrant is regarding, among other things, export filings that relate to the CSARL matter first disclosed in Caterpillar’s Form 10-K filed on February 17, 2015, and updated in Caterpillar’s most recent Form 10-K filed with the SEC on February 15, 2017.”
CSARL is a Switzerland-based subsidiary of Caterpillar.
During Caterpillar’s press event at ConExpo-Con/Agg held in Las Vegas this week, several questions were asked regarding the raid. CEO Jim Umpleby, who took over from former CEO Doug Oberhelman in January, told those in attendance they were surprised by the raid because the company has been cooperating fully with the investigation.
He said, “We have a long and good reputation of being ethical.” And he added that the company would continue in that fashion.
Umpleby would not go into any specifics regarding the investigation.
The search comes just weeks after Oberhelman, who is the chairman of the board until March 31, met with President Donald Trump along with the heads of 23 other manufacturing companies in the U.S. to discuss bringing manufacturing jobs back to the U.S.
During the meeting at the Whitehouse, Trump said told Oberhelman, “I love Caterpillar. I’ve been driving them for a long time.”
In January, Caterpillar announced plans to move its global headquarters from Peoria to Chicago.