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bribery & corruption
Bribery can be as simple as giving gifts to an individual when they are deciding on a deal. However it manifests, bribery and corruption are serious crimes and can be detrimental for businesses.
Contents for Bribery & Corruption
What is Bribery & corruption?
The definition of corruption is the abuse of any form of power for private gain. Some examples of this could be:
- A person who is given power by an organization who then goes on to abuse it
- A form of activity that is beyond the position or remit of a person
- A person who has obtained a form of benefit for personal gain rather than that of their firm.
Bribery itself comes under the umbrella of corruption. Bribery is generally the illicit offering, promising, or giving of something, whether financial or physical, to influence another individual, normally an employer or employee. These could be:
- Financial payments to an individual
- Offering certain benefits such as gifts, donations, entertainment, internships and sponsorships.
- Levels of comfort or hospitality that are disproportionate or inappropriate to a business transactionWhatever form you may have witnessed or received bribery or corruption, it is not only illegal, but highly inappropriate and can make the individual feel intimidated.
You should know…
The four main offences under the Bribery Act 2010 are:
- Bribing another person
- Being bribed
- Bribing a foreign public official
- Failure by a commercial organisation to prevent bribery
What are the Anti-bribery & Corruption Rules?
The UK BRIBERY ACT 2010
The 2010 UK Bribery Act applies to all companies incorporated in the UK. Firms will need to undergo an ABC risk assessment to understand their exposure to bribery and corruption risks and will need to provide adequate training to staff and third parties on the bribery and corruption legislation that applies to all businesses. As a staff member, your first point of contact should be your manager, to whom you can report the situation and other staff members can be warned.
Anti-bribery and corruption procedures
The following guidelines can help businesses to assess if they have adequate anti-bribery and corruption procedures:
– Regular risk assessments are carried out which document any potential internal or external risks of bribery.
– Commitment from the senior manager to prevent bribery by ensuring anti-bribery and corruption policies are embedded and are understood throughout the organisation.
– Monitoring and reviewing procedures that are used to prevent bribery, and making regular updates to procedures where necessary.
How are businesses protected?
Although most businesses in the UK have anti-bribery and anti-corruption policies in place, bribery and corruption still pose a significant risk for all firms and organisations. Bribery and corruption can cause inequality, instability and can even lead to discrimination and victimization of staff. If you think that you are being bribed, or have witnessed bribery and corruption in your workplace, it essential to seek the assistance of a lawyer.
Key Benefits of Using BRIBERY & CORRUPTION LAWYER
An expert criminal defence lawyer can advise corporates whether and when to self-report, as well as advise on negotiations with the relevant authorities to mitigate sanctions.
A lawyer can advise on the design and structure of a businesses compliance programme. Furthermore, once implemented a lawyer can help to monitor and review the procedures to prevent bribery and corruption.
A criminal defence lawyer can provide information on how much the case is likely to cost and the best strategy available to them in their current situation.
A lawyer who specialises in criminal fraud can ensure you understand your rights, provide clarity, advocacy and representation when presenting evidence in court. Furthermore, they can structure a comprehensive case to your individual circumstances in an objective manner.
If you have been suspected of bribery and corruption a lawyer can help by building you a strong case considering the accusations brought by the prosecution, the consequences of the case.
how a lawyer can help with bribery & Corruption cases
Signs of corruption are usually quite simple to spot but can be difficult to follow up without the necessary representation by a lawyer. For example, these may be if you have worked with an individual, agent or partner who has been reluctant to go through proper procedures has requested that payments be made into an offshore account or has requested a disproportionately high commission fee (amongst many other things).
Situations, where you may be at risk of bribery, could include facilitation payments (small bribe offers for routine services) or anything that is given to you that has any form of value. For a gift to not be considered a bribe, it must be transparent, be proportionate and have a legitimate business purpose.
Bribery can result in huge fines for corporations and in some cases can result in imprisonment, so don’t hesitate to take legal action and start your claim. Our partner bribery and corruption lawyers have experience in advising witnesses in bribery and corruption investigations
An investigation into bribery and corruption can be extremely stressful, but our partner lawyers can offer expert, cost-effective support for those for wish to start an investigation, or are equally being investigated.
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