The following Practice Compliance Q&A produced in partnership with Adrian Maxwell of St John's Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
De minimis non curat lex means ‘the law cares not for small things’. But the Bribery Act 2010 (BA 2010) demonstrates that this may not be true.
BA 2010 came into force on 1 July 2011. It consolidated and replaced outdated bribery and corruption laws. It was a response to criticisms of the UK regime from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). BA 2010 reflects the government’s zero tolerance to bribery in UK trade. It’s short (just 20 sections and 2 schedules), but it creates widely drawn criminal offences and applies to individuals and corporations in both the private and public sectors.
Adrian Maxwell, leading financial crime barrister, considers the key challenges and concerns for firms and sets out what firms might expect from the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).
There is a strict liability corporate offence of failing to prevent bribery. A statutory defence may be available where a defendant company can show it has in place ‘adequate procedures designed to prevent (bribery)’.
Adequate procedures (AP) are not defined. However, the Secretary of State is required to issue guidance about procedures corporations can adopt to prevent bribery.
BA 2010 gives a statutory defence that pivots on the existence of AP. These are not defined in BA 2010 so we must look to the guidance from the Secretary of State and to the attitude
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When defendants are guilty, they have a choice to plead guilty or to put the prosecution to proof. When they plead guilty they may benefit from a reduction in their sentence as a result, see Practice Note: Credit for guilty plea. However, the Sentencing Council's overarching guidelines on reduction
BREXIT: As of exit day (31 January 2020), the UK is no longer an EU Member State. However, in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK has entered an implementation period, during which it continues to be subject to EU law. This has an impact on this Practice Note. For further guidance on
Issue estoppel is a sub-species of the res judicata doctrine (see Practice Note: The doctrine of res judicata). In addition to the general key requirements for establishing a res judicata (see Practice Note: Key requirements to establish a res judicata), this Practice Note considers the specific
This Practice Note provides guidance on the interpretation and application of the relevant provisions of the CPR. Depending on the court in which your matter is proceeding, you may also need to be mindful of additional provisions—see further below.Note: this Practice Note does not deal with the
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