The UK’s anti-corruption laws have been significantly strengthened by the Bribery Act 2010 which came into force on 1 July 2011. In summary, the Act introduces four new categories of offence:
- offering, promising or giving a bribe to another person;
- requesting, agreeing to receive or accepting a bribe from another person;
- bribing a foreign public official;
- failing to prevent bribery (known as the corporate offence).
The only defence available to the corporate offence is to prove that adequate procedures were in place to prevent bribery from being committed by those performing services on the company’s behalf. As a result it is now more important than ever to have in appropriate contracts clauses relating to bribery and corruption.
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