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Buachaill
Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10623
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
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I suspect my boss of bribery. I have evidence of a financial

Resolved Question:

I suspect my boss of bribery. I have evidence of a financial advantage being paid by my boss on several occasions to an agent who was in a position to benefit him 1) a 'loan' that was made in 2007 for £250,000 that was never repaid 2) work done on the agents own home in 2008, 2011 and 2011 3) fees that were not commercial paid to the agents employer (of which the agent was a partner in the firm) 4). Various holidays.
I have a real suspicion that the payments were improper and/or Illegal for the following reasons
1). In 2009 I witnessed a telephone conversation between my boss and the agent where they appeared to be conspiring on a transaction. At this time I did not know about the loan and other personal payments and therefore put this down to improper behaviour as opposed to criminal activity.
2) I have evidenced that the same agent (who was paid the inducement) advised a 3rd party to then sell something of value (that would now be worth £40 million) for £1.5 million in 2011. This was about the time the agent was having work do e on his own home. Subsequent to this transaction the agent was appointed to do some fee based work and was paid about £6 million.
3). There is a general pattern of questionable transactions and relationships.
Of course, there is no 'smoking gun' evidence. I have reported to the company but they have refused to properly investigate. I am in a very senior position although have now resigned.
I would like to know whether I have obligations to report. If so who do I report to. If I do report what are the prospects of an investigation and do the facts constitute sufficient to meet the evidential test where these are matters of fact.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
1. The Serious Fraud Office is the lead enforcement agency for Bribery in the UK. So it is to them that you should make a complaint here if you suspect your boss of bribery. Be aware that whilst your boss may be liable for the offence of bribery, there is also a corporate offence of failing to prevent bribery taking place which will affect the firm or company where you worked. So, as you made an internal complaint but the company did not want to investigate, this offence has also been made out. Be aware that the Bribery Act, 2010, places an obligation on everyone within a company who becomes aware of bribery occurring to report the offence. So you have a reporting obligation now that you know it has been going on. It will then be up to the SFO to lead the investigation.
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
2. If you have been reading the Financial Times, you will have seen that the first offences of bribery were prosecuted in the UK earlier this year. They resulted in imprisonment for the men concerned. Now that the first prosecutions have taken place, the SFO and prosecuting authorities will have increased confidence in bringing prosecutions. As to whether the facts are sufficient to meet the necessary evidential burden, I cannot really say as I am at some remove and cannot really test the evidence. However, there clearly is something unusual going on. The SFO will be able to seize files and access public records in relation to the monies passing and will be able to quickly tell whether this is bribery or not.
Expert:  Buachaill replied 2 years ago.
3. Be aware that the SFO runs a confidential access line which I would recommend you use. Here is the link http://www.sfo.gov.uk/fraud/sfo-confidential---giving-us-information-in-confidence.aspx
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