Posted by Gemma Ospedale, Partner
On 1 September 2016 Withy King LLP merged with Royds LLP. The trading name for the merged firm is Royds Withy King. All content produced prior to this date will remain in the name of the firms pre-merger.
Arrests in connection with bribery investigation.
Earlier in February it was reported in the press that the authorities in England had made two arrests and searched a number of addresses in London as part of an investigation into bribery and corruption at Rolls-Royce Holdings Plc.
The arrests are the preliminary result of a formal investigation into “concerns about bribery and corruption in overseas markets” which had been started by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) some time ago. The agency recently asked the government for an additional 19 million pounds of funding to help pay for the work associated with such cases.
Rolls-Royce identified “matters of concern” in 2012 in China and Indonesia in a review as a response to an inquiry from the SFO. The company has named David Gold, previously a partner at the law firm Herbert Smith LLP, to review anti-corruption procedures.
The company has declined to comment on the arrests and searches. The SFO advised that it was assisted by officers from the National Crime Agency and the City of London Police.
This case illustrates that businesses situated in England with activities overseas can become subject of an investigation by UK authorities, because of actions which take place overseas. Therefore, such businesses must make sure that their business procedures do not contravene the Bribery Act.
This is also a case that shows how serious authorities take bribery and corruption allegations. In 2011 the Bribery Act came into force in the UK. It imposes strict obligations on businesses active in the UK to implement adequate measures to prevent bribery. The Bribery Act applies to all businesses with activity in the United Kingdom regardless of whether the business is set up or incorporated in the United Kingdom.
At Royds, we appreciate and understand that there are a myriad of problems and issues which can evolve from running a business, or selling shares – and as such, we have a dedicated team who can assist you. We have particular expertise in advising on:
• Mergers & Acquisitions
• Shareholder agreements
• Special Responsibilities
• International Operations
• Anti-Bribery Policies
• Employment Contracts
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