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Mishcon's Culture vs Corruption Diary - October 2013

Welcome to the October edition of Mishcon's Culture vs Corruption Diary. Its aim is to provide businesses and their advisors with a snapshot of what has been happening in the world of corruption in the last month.

We make no judgment whatsoever as to the morality, legality or appropriateness of the conduct which forms the subject matter of this bulletin. We simply aim to bring these matters to the attention of those involved in the prevention, detection and investigation of fraud.

UK

Corrupt payments

Eight people have appeared at a preliminary hearing at the Old Bailey and will appear for a plea and case management hearing on November 22nd, over allegations of corrupt payments to police and public officials. They are: The Sun newspaper's former deputy news editor, Ben O'Driscoll, former managing editor Graham Dudman and journalist Vince Soodin. Also, ex-Daily Mirror journalist Greig Box Turnbull, Wiltshire Police officer Darren Jennings, Belmarsh Prison officers Grant Pizzey and Desra Reilly and former assistant technical instructor at Broadmoor Hospital, Berkshire, Alan Ostler.
Telegraph, 19 September 2013

Immigration

The Home Office has revealed that more than 30 civil servant employees have been convicted over the past five years of allowing people to enter Britain illegally, including officials who took bribes worth tens of thousands of pounds to allow people into the country without permission and to issue false documents, including passports. The corrupt officials have been given prison sentences totalling more than 152 years.
Kevin Dowling
Sunday Times, 15 September 2013

EUROPE

Political mafia

Serge Dassault, 88, the French billionaire manufacturer of military fighter jets, influential press baron and right-wing senator for Nicolas Sarkozy's UMP party, has become embroiled in a series of legal investigations into allegations of vote-buying, attempted murder and mafia-behaviour, centred on Corbeil-Essonne, his former fiefdom, east of Paris. Dassault has denied any wrong-doing.
Angelique Chrisafis
Guardian, 20 September 2013

ASIA

Pharmaceuticals

Western drug groups have launched an anti-corruption drive in China in the wake of the recent damaging probes into the industry. A memo prepared by RDPAC, the trade body for foreign pharmaceutical businesses in China, and PhRMA, the association of US drug companies, says it expects its members to follow the highest ethical standards and stresses that any "inappropriate behaviour" should be "dealt with swiftly", also calling for the introduction of principles for ethical behaviour across the sector.
Andrew Jack
Financial Times, 16 September 2013

Bribery

Barclays has been accused of bribery costing $10 billion in lost business opportunities since 2003 by Saudi Arabian property tycoon, Mohamed bin Issa al Jaber, owner of MBI International. A court filing listed in New York alleges that ten years ago, when a company owned by MBI took out a loan from Barclays secured on rent that the Saudi Government was paying on one of MBI's properties, Barclays, the creditor, negotiated a settlement with the Saudi Government when it defaulted, which helped the bank secure a license to operate in Saudi Arabia. None of the claims have yet been verified.
Juliet Samuel
Times, 12 September 2013

SOUTH AMERICA

Politics

Brazil's Supreme Court has granted a retrial to 12 of the 25 top politicians and businessmen convicted last year in the country's worst ever corruption scandal after senior judge Celso de Mello, weighed in favour of reopening the case and said the decision would not be swayed by public opinion. The senior government figures were convicted of using public funds to buy votes in Congress, but no one has yet been jailed for the offences.
James Hider
Times, 20 September 2013

AFRICA

Confiscation case

James Ibori, the corrupt ex-governor of Nigeria's oil-rich Delta state, is alleged to have offered Nuhu Ribadu, the former head of the Nigerian Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, a $15million cash bribe in April 2007, in return for dropping a criminal investigation against him. Ibori is serving a 13 year jail sentence, after pleading guilty last year to fraud and money laundering offences. The court is deciding whether a confiscation order should be made against him.
Jane Croft
Financial Times, 20 September 2013

Mishcon de Reya

Mishcon's Culture vs Corruption Diary is published by the Dispute Resolution Department of Mishcon de Reya. Widely recognised as the leader in the field of fraud investigations, the Department has extensive experience in conducting and/or project managing highly sensitive international investigations in respect of bribery and corruption allegations. The Department founded and runs both the International Fraud Group, made up of international legal fraud specialists, and the Financial Risk Group, for risk and compliance officers.