Thursday, 7 June 2007

Those BAE payments

I find it odd that when the BBC today reported that armaments company BAE with UK Ministry of Defence co-operation secretly paid Prince Bandar of Saudi Arabia more than £1bn in connection with Britain's biggest ever weapons contract, various opinion-formers commented that such payments were outlawed in 2002. A cursory glance at section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906, which is very widely expressed and still in force, suggests that such payments were outlawed a great deal earlier than that - over a century ago, in fact. I look forward to being told the legal arguments to the contrary.
So much for the criminal law. As for civil law, it could be that the State of Saudi Arabia has a heck of a claim against Prince Bandar for repayment of secret profits.

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