Bribery in the UK or elsewhere is a criminal offence under the Bribery Act 2010. UK firms risk prosecution if they fail to take appropriate steps to prevent bribery. A defence is available if a firm can demonstrate that it maintains adequate (bribery-prevention) procedures.

Financial crime risk includes the risk of corruption and is wider than the Bribery Act’s scope. The FCA may take action against a firm having deficient anti-bribery and corruption systems and controls, regardless of whether or not bribery or corruption has taken place.

Source of risk

When a firm's employees, agents or intermediaries (i.e. associated persons) seek to win new business, or retain existing business, UK law includes:

  1. Criminal offences associated with offering, promising or giving bribes (plus a specific offence of bribery of a foreign public official)
  2. Criminal offences associated with requesting, agreeing to receive or accepting bribes
  3. A corporate offence for failing to maintain adequate procedures to prevent bribery by associated persons

Bribery response

An adequate procedures framework should reflect the following key principles:

How we can help you

FCRM assists clients to identify and assess bribery risk in internal business process and the operating environment, to inform content of the adequate procedure framework. We investigate alleged/suspected bribery, providing independence, objectivity and experience when responding to issues.

We conduct due-diligence on parties to a business relationship, looking for indicators or red-flags of improper payments; and we are accustomed to assisting clients with questions/concerns posed by a regulator, relating to risk in the control environment (e.g. per FCA Handbook - SUP 15.3.17).

Integrity in Business Practice