Selling to GE (NYSE:GE) is usually the ultimate exit. The price tag is strong, the integration smooth, and the experience gained by working with GE invaluable.

On the other hand, GE has a tremendous amount of experience buying companies and knows how to dig deep. In GE's $900 million purchase of InVision Technologies (NASDAQ:INVN), the GE team may have yet again shown its due diligence prowess.

Last Friday, InVision announced that there may be an investigation from the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission regarding alleged illicit payments on foreign sales.

Such violations would fall under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Interestingly enough, this law has become a sticking point in a variety of deals. Basically, as companies expand globally, they run into the tricky moral issues of dealing with disparate cultures.

Recently, for example, Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMT) walked away from its purchase of Titan (NYSE:TTN). The mere allegations of bribery under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act were all it took. As a result, Titan had to take a one-time charge for the merger expenses and had to reserve against expenses for dealing with the federal probe.

Regarding the GE deal, management indicated that it wants to conclude the transaction. This is no surprise, though, as GE must make good-faith efforts to move the deal along.

However, if the investigation lingers, GE could very well do what Lockheed did; that is, it could first reduce the price of the acquisition. And, if matters are not resolved by Oct. 31, then GE could walk. No doubt, GE is in a superior position.

Want to read more about Lockheed and Titan's tangle? Try the following articles from Rich Smith:

Fool contributor Tom Taulli is the author of The EDGAR Online Guide to Decoding Financial Statements. He does not own shares in any of the stocks mentioned.