A US hardware company has agreed to pay restitution to clients who were given incentives to buy products at higher prices

Federal authorities in the US said that a hardware and chemicals company has agreed to pay $30m in restitution following the corrupt conduct of its sales staff.

The staff of Lawson Products provided nearly $10m in kickbacks to customers who bought products at higher prices.

Separate criminal charges were also filed today against two former sales managers for Lawson and a third man who allegedly aided and abetted the corrupt incentive scheme.

Thirteen defendants, including seven former Lawson sales agents were charged in April 2007 in Chicago and other cities. Twelve of those 13 have been convicted so far.