First Bribery Act Conviction Reaches the Court of Appeal
Earlier this year, we commented on the case of Munir Patel, who was the first individual to be subjected to a prison sentence under the Bribery Act 2010. Mr Patel, a former Court Clerk, was jailed for assisting various offenders in avoiding prosecution in exchange for payment of sums of up to £500. Mr Patel was originally sentenced to a three year prison term for bribery and a concurrent six year sentence for misconduct in a public office.
On appeal, however, the Court of Appeal determined that the sentence was "excessive" and that although a substantial sentence was appropriate in the circumstances, the term should be reduced from six to four years.
Although Mr Patel`s sentence was reduced, the case serves as a reminder that the Courts will not hesitate to impose substantial sentences for bribery offences, which can attach to both individuals and senior officers of companies where it can be shown that there is consent or connivance in corporate bribery.
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