First Conviction Under the New Bribery Act Legislation

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A magistrates court clerk who received a payment in exchange for not recording a driving offence has become the first person to be convicted under the Bribery Act which came into force on 1st July this year. Munir Yakub Patel, aged 22 and an administrative clerk at Redbridge Magistrates Court in East London, agreed to keep details of a traffic summons off the Court database in exchange for £500. He admitted the charge at Southwark Crown Court on 14th October – one count of bribery and one count of misconduct in a public office having been caught on film by the Sun newspaper in August. The charge stated that he had given advice to people over a period between 23 February 2009 and August 2011 about how to avoid being summoned to court for similar offences. The Sun newspaper had filmed him arranging the bribe with Jayraj Singh who had been given a speeding penalty. Patel was bailed until 11th November when he will be sentenced. The maximum sentence under the act is 10 years’ imprisonment.

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