The countdown has started and the Bribery Act will come into force on 1st July 2011. It covers the existing offences of bribing another person or being bribed as well as new offences of bribing a foreign public official and that of a commercial organization failing to prevent bribery. The penalties are severe: apart from fines, individuals can face up to 10 years in prison and the business concerned can have its operations radically curtailed both in the UK and abroad.
All forms of business need to take note and start to review their procedures so as to ensure that staff and contractors in the widest sense will not be committing bribery. I will be producing guidance note shortly to help you through the maze of the Bribery Act’s provisions. In the meantime, here is a link to the Ministry of Justice’s guidance note on the law: Click here