U.S. authorities are investigating British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline for violations of U.S. anti-bribery laws in China after Chinese government officials accused the company of bribing doctors, a company spokesman confirmed on Friday.
The investigation is part of a wider probe of drugmakers' sales practices in China, said a source familiar with the investigation.
The Department of Justice has expanded a probe into GSK's business practices in other countries to include the Chinese bribery allegations, the source said.
Chinese police said in July they had detained four Chinese executives at GSK on allegations the executives funneled up to 3 billion yuan ($489.92 million) to travel agencies to facilitate bribes to doctors to boost the sale of its medicines.
The Justice Department's probe is focusing on whether GSK and other drugmakers violated the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices act, which forbids U.S. companies from engaging in bribery while doing business abroad.