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Glencore Pleads Guilty In The U.K.

In connection with the May Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement action against Glencore [1], the U.K. Serious Fraud Office also announced [2] that a Glencore entity was charged with seven counts of bribery in connection with its oil operations.

Yesterday, the SFO announced [3] that:

“Glencore Energy (UK) Ltd has … been convicted on all charges of bribery brought against it by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO).  At Southwark Crown Court, the company admitted to multiple counts of paying bribes to secure access to oil and generate illicit profit. The SFO’s investigation exposed that Glencore, via its employees and agents, paid bribes of over $28 million for preferential access to oil, including increased cargoes, valuable grades of oil and preferable dates of delivery.  These actions were approved by the company across its oil operations in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea and South Sudan. Glencore will be sentenced on 2nd  and 3rd November his year.”

According to the SFO release, “Glencore has been convicted of seven counts of bribery under the Bribery Act 2010, five substantive charges under Section 1 and two under the corporate failure to prevent bribery offence, section 7.”

Count 1 states:

“Between the 1st of March 2012 and the 1st of April 2014, Glencore Energy UK Limited gave a financial advantage, namely USD 4,586,143, to another, intending the advantage to induce officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Glencore Energy UK Limited in the allocation of crude oil cargoes, the dates crude oil would be lifted and the grades of crude oil allocated.”

Count 2 states:

“Between the 1st of July 2012 and the 1st of August 2014, Glencore Energy UK Limited, gave a financial advantage, namely USD 2,047,004, to another, intending the advantage to induce officials of Ontario Trading S.A. Limited to perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Glencore Energy UK Limited in the allocation of crude oil cargoes, the price of crude oil cargoes, the dates crude oil would be lifted and the grades of crude oil allocated.”

Count 3 states:

“Between the 1st of July 2012 and the 1st of April 2014 Glencore Energy UK Limited gave a financial advantage, namely USD 335,920, to another, intending the advantage to induce officials of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation to perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Petroleos De Geneve S.A. Limited in the allocation of crude oil cargoes, the dates crude oil would be lifted and the grades of crude oil allocated.”

Count 4 states:

“Between the 1st of March 2012 and the 1st of March 2015, Glencore Energy UK Limited gave a financial advantage, namely EUR 10,532,712, to another, intending the advantage to induce officials of Société Nationale des Hydrocarbures and the Société Nationale de Raffinage to perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Glencore Energy UK Limited in oil transactions in Cameroon.”

Count 5 states:

“Glencore Energy UK Limited, between the 1st of July 2011 and the 1st of April 2016 gave a financial advantage, namely EUR 4,737,381, to another, intending the advantage to induce officials of Société Nationale d’Opérations Pétrolières de la Côte D’Ivoire, Petroci Holding and Société Ivoirienne de Raffinage to perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Glencore Energy UK Limited in oil transactions in Ivory Coast.”

Count 6 states:

“Between the 1st of July 2011 and the 1st of December 2011, Glencore Energy UK Limited failed to prevent persons associated with Glencore Energy UK Limited from bribing officials concerned in the award of crude oil cargoes in Equatorial Guinea, where the said bribery was intended to obtain or retain business or an advantage in the conduct of business for Glencore Energy UK Limited.”

Count 7 states:

“Between the 1st of July 2011 and the 1st of December 2011, Glencore Energy UK Limited failed to prevent persons associated with Glencore Energy UK Limited from bribing officials concerned in the award of crude oil cargoes in South Sudan, where the said bribery was intended to obtain or retain business or an advantage in the conduct of business for Glencore Energy UK Limited.”

The FCPA enforcement action concerned conduct in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Brazil, Venezuela, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

As indicated above, the SFO Bribery Act enforcement action concerned conduct in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea and South Sudan.