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Bribery Act implementation delayed



Act implementation delayed

Ministry of Justice have put back the implementation of the Bribery Act from
October 2010 to April 2011 to provide businesses with an adequate
familiarisation period before the provisions come into force.

Ministry of Justice has announced that the Bribery Act 2010 will come into
force in April 2011, and not October 2010 as originally envisaged. The Act will
introduce a corporate offence of failure to prevent bribery by persons working
on behalf of a business, but a business can avoid conviction if it can show
that it has adequate procedures in place to prevent bribery.

The Act
will also make it a criminal offence to give, promise or offer a bribe and to
request, agree to receive or accept a bribe either at home or abroad. The
maximum penalty for bribery will be increased from 7 to 10 years imprisonment,
with an unlimited fine.

In September 2010 the
Government will launch a short consultation exercise on the guidance about
procedures which commercial organisations can put in place to prevent bribery
on their behalf. This will be published early in the New Year to allow
businesses an adequate familiarisation period before the Act commences and will
be followed by a series of awareness-raising events.

August 2010

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