Much like the anti-bribery provisions of the FCPA, section 6 of the UK Bribery Act prohibits improper inducements to foreign officials. But in addition, sections 1 and 2 of the UK Bribery Act specifically prohibit what is often referred to as commercial bribery or private bribery, including situations where one solicits a bribe (passive bribery) and situations where one makes an improper inducement (active bribery). U.S. laws other than the FCPA may address similar conduct in certain situations. Nevertheless, the breadth of the prohibitions of the UK Bribery Act, the implications of its broad jurisdictional reach, and the absence of an exception for facilitation payments, dictate the need for a firm like DEMING PLLC with the depth of experience and requisite knowledge to provide sound advice on the UK Bribery Act as well as similar legal regimes like the FCPA.
Corporate Compliance under the UK Bribery Act
An entity subject to the UK Bribery Act can be held strictly liable under section 7 if anyone “associated’ with a commercial organization subject to its jurisdiction violates section 1 or 6 of the UK Bribery Act. It does not matter whether the individual would have been subject to the jurisdictional reach of the UK Bribery Act. However, an affirmative defense is provided if the commercial organization can prove that it had adequate procedures in place to prevent the foreign bribery offense. The UK Ministry of Justice has issued guidance as to what is necessary for adequate procedures exist. In this regard, DEMING PLLC assists commercial organizations, audit committees, law firms, and auditors in helping to evaluate and design adequate procedures that meet the requirements of the UK Bribery Act.