Now The First Person Has Been Convicted Under The Bribery Act

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Munir Yakub Patel was the first person to be convicted under the new Bribery Act on 14th October when he was bailed whilst waiting for his sentence. Mr Patel worked at Redbridge Magistrates Court and was filmed by The Sun newspaper taking a bribe of £500 to avoid putting the details of a traffic summons onto the Court database. He admitted one count of bribery but the prosecution believe he may have earned up to £20,000 by helping other offenders. He as now been sentenced to three years for bribery and six years for misconduct in a public office and will serve both sentences concurrently. Sentencing him, Judge Alistair McCreath told Patel: “It hardly needs saying that these were very serious offences. “They involved a very substantial breach of trust. Your position as a court clerk had at its heart a duty to public confidence in it. “A justice system in which officials are prepared to take bribes in order to allow offenders to escape the proper consequences of their offending is inherently corrupt and is one which deserves no public respect and which will attract none.” “This indictment represents misconduct which lasted well over a year and involved at least 53 cases in which you manipulated the process in order to save offenders from the consequences of their offending – fines, penalty points and disqualification.” At the time Patel was convicted, senior Crown advocate for the Crown Prosecution Service special crime and counter terrorism division Gaon Hart said: “This prosecution is the first of its kind under the Bribery Act 2010, which has provided a significant weapon in the armoury of prosecutors that enables us to focus on the bribery element rather than general misconduct behaviour. “We will continue to target those who act corruptly purely for personal gain and tailor the charge to reflect their wrong-doing.” This new piece of legislation came into force on 1st July. It created four criminal offences relating to bribery:
  • bribing another;
  • being bribed;
  • bribing a foreign official;
  • for commercial organisations, failing to prevent bribery.
The Act also marks the first time in the UK that bribery will be a corporate crime.

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