CorruptionThe Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has a policy of encouraging self-reporting by companies of suspected bribery and corruption offences. The inducement offered by the SFO is that the corporate may avoid criminal prosecution and instead negotiate a civil settlement if the corporate is seen to fully co-operate with the SFO.

A civil settlement can be the best outcome for the corporation as it avoids the uncertainty and upheaval of a criminal prosecution with its attendant reputational damage. However, this may lead to a divergence of interests between the corporate body and its shareholders, and the company officers and employees who have been identified in the company’s report to the SFO.

Company officers and employees facing investigation require robust representation at an early stage. Our corruption and bribery lawyers at Stokoe have extensive experience in representing individuals under investigation for these offences, and have represented clients in such high-profile cases as the British Aerospace and Mabey and Johnson cases.