Anti Bribery & Corruption
One of the core elements of a successful global business is responsible and transparent trading. Not only do bribery and corruption have adverse effects on the way the economy functions, they also carry civil and criminal sanctions across a number of jurisdictions.
Governments across the world are stepping up the enforcement of anti-bribery laws. While the US continues to lead in the number of prosecutions concerning the payment of bribes, the UK’s Bribery Act 2010 is widely seen as one of the world’s most thorough and far-reaching anti-bribery statutes. We have global expertise in anti-corruption laws and sanctions across multiple jurisdictions which enables us to handle ABC cases worldwide. We have the resources and local expertise to efficiently deal with cross-border issues and to present a coherent response to authorities.
Our team of specialist lawyers is experienced in advising a diverse range of global corporates on anti-corruption and sanctions due diligence, compliance with anti-corruption laws and UN and domestic sanctions and investigations brought by regulatory bodies including the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the Independent Commission against Corruption (ICAC) in Hong Kong.
Prosecutors in the UK now have an important new enforcement tool in the form of Deferred Prosecution Agreements. The use of DPAs is likely to increase significantly in the future. We already have experience of advising in this context, including on the following issues:
- Whether or not to seek to enter into DPA negotiations with a prosecutor
- Strategic considerations during DPA negotiations
- Issues of legal privilege which may arise during DPA negotiations
Examples of public anti-bribery matters on which we have advised clients include:
- BAE Systems plc’s settlements with the UK’s Serious Fraud Office and the US Department of Justice
- Acting for AMEC Foster Wheeler Plc in connection with the second ever civil recovery settlement obtained by the SFO
- Royal Ahold’s settlement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the DOJ
- Advising News Corporation’s Management and Standards Committee on the high-profile News of the World phone hacking case, part of which is dealing with the corruption investigation being conducted by the Metropolitan Police
- Assisting an international manufacturing group regarding accounting issues and allegations of bribery and corruption affecting subsidiaries across Western Europe, the EU and the FSU
In addition, we have substantial investigation experience, highlights of which include:
- Advising a multi-national company in connection with a highly confidential internal investigation into allegations of breach of export licence regimes and possible bribery and corruption affecting its subsidiaries
- Assisting a multi-national retail company with its investigation into allegations made by its former Russian GC regarding bribery and lack of regulatory compliance in Moscow
- Assisting a client with an investigation into bribes allegedly paid to public officials in the UAE in order to obtain visas