Friday, November 05, 2010

Bribery in a Security Perspective

The Bribery Act 2010 comes into force in April 2011 in Uk, and it is important we are all well-informed about it. The Act creates offences of individuals or commercial organisations giving or receiving a bribe. If a commercial organisation has committed an offence, any senior officers who have consented or connived are also liable. The Act creates a new, separate offence of bribing a foreign official. It also creates an offence of failing to prevent bribery.
The offence of bribery can be committed by anyone associated with the company -- this will capture employees, subsidiaries, agents, joint venture partners and anyone who provides a service for the organisation. The bribery can take place anywhere in the world and the Act specifically makes no allowance for local custom or practice in foreign jurisdictions. It is a strict liability offence and a statutory defence is only available if the organisation can show it had "adequate procedures" in place to prevent Bribery.
Consider the recent events in China


"China has barred a GlaxoSmithKline executive from leaving
the country as it turns up the heat on the drugmaker over
allegations of corruption.

Steve Nechelput, finance director for GlaxoSmithKline China,
has been prevented from traveling outside China since the
end of June.

The U.K. drugmaker has been accused by China of using a
network of more than 700 travel agencies and other firms to
channel bribes to health officials since 2007

It would be an interesting terrain to observe

“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is a daring adventure or nothing at all.” — Helen Keller