United Kingdom: Briton jailed over plot to pay bribes for Iraq oil contract

A British businessman has been jailed for three and a half years after being convicted of conspiring to pay huge backhanders in one of the world’s biggest bribery scandals.

The jailing of Paul Bond on Monday is the fourth successful prosecution by the Serious Fraud Office following the exposure of the systematic use of multimillion-dollar bribes to secure lucrative contracts around the world for blue-chip firms.

Investigations by the SFO and its counterparts in the US and other countries uncovered widespread corruption organised by Unaoil, a firm that purported to be an oil and gas consultancy.

Two of the ringleaders who owned and controlled the now-collapsed Unaoil have admitted their roles in bribing officials in nine countries over a period of 17 years and are awaiting sentencing in the US.

The convictions of the four businessmen in the UK courts will be seen as a much-needed feather in the cap of Lisa Osofsky, the SFO’s director. The investigation was one of the agency’s biggest and was backed with special funding from the Treasury.

The original full article can be found at theguardian.com

(Photo: Charlie Bibby/FT)

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