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Commission

or Kickback?

2 November 2013

Last revised

minutes

3

Reading time

As Members know, yachts aren’t run on shoestring budgets. And most of the money is spent not by them in person, but by their captains and other trusted third parties. In highly competitive marketplaces, there is an incentive to buy business with formal ‘commissions’, extravagant ‘thank you’s – or perhaps just a good old brown envelope.

minutes

3

Reading time

2 November 2013

Last revised

As Members know, yachts aren’t run on shoestring budgets. And most of the money is spent not by them in person, but by their captains and other trusted third parties. In highly competitive marketplaces, there is an incentive to buy business with formal ‘commissions’, extravagant ‘thank you’s – or perhaps just a good old brown envelope.

  • The Bribery Act 2010 in the UK is considered one of the toughest anti-bribery laws globally, with similar principles found in the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

  • The Act applies extraterritorially, meaning that a crime can be committed even if the transaction occurs outside of the UK.

  • There are four key offences under the Act: bribing, receiving a bribe, bribing a foreign public official, and failing to prevent bribery.

  • Bribing involves offering or promising a financial or other advantage in exchange for improper performance of a function or activity, while receiving a bribe includes requesting or accepting such an advantage.

  • Local practices should be disregarded when determining improperness, unless they are part of the written local law.

  • Hospitality can be considered bribery if it is disproportionately generous, especially in industries focused on luxury.

  • The offence of failing to prevent bribery applies to all commercial organizations, including companies and partnerships operating in the UK.

  • Bribery crimes committed outside the UK can be investigated and prosecuted if there is a "close connection" to the UK, such as being a UK passport holder or ordinarily resident.

  • The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in the UK handles corruption allegations involving UK nationals or incorporated bodies overseas, and there is international cooperation in investigating and prosecuting bribery and corruption.

  • The United States' Foreign Corrupt Practices Act allows payments to foreign public officials to expedite their duties, even if it violates local laws. Civil actions can also be taken against individuals involved in bribery, and a criminal conviction serves as proof of civil liability.

  • Hospitality can be considered bribery if it is disproportionately generous, especially in industries focused on luxury.

  • The offence of failing to prevent bribery applies to all commercial organizations, including companies and partnerships operating in the UK.

  • Bribery crimes committed outside the UK can be investigated and prosecuted if there is a "close connection" to the UK, such as being a UK passport holder or ordinarily resident.

  • The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in the UK handles corruption allegations involving UK nationals or incorporated bodies overseas, and there is international cooperation in investigating and prosecuting bribery and corruption.

  • The United States' Foreign Corrupt Practices Act allows payments to foreign public officials to expedite their duties, even if it violates local laws. Civil actions can also be taken against individuals involved in bribery, and a criminal conviction serves as proof of civil liability.