Resources: Press release

38 results
Complaint submitted to UK Parliamentary Ombudsman

8 May 2012

Nigerian anti-corruption whistleblower Dotun Oloko today accused  Britain’s Department of International Development (DfID) and its private sector arm, the CDC Group, of jeopardising criminal investigations into potential wrongdoing by two CDC-backed private equity funds, Emerging Capital Partners and Ethos.

In 2009, Mr Oloko supplied DfID with detailed information on investments by the two funds in companies alleged to have acted as money laundering fronts for James Ibori, the former Nigerian state governor who was sentenced last month for money laundering and fraud.

16 April 2012

Campaigners slam government’s development approach as DfID-backed private equity fund comes under criminal investigation in Nigeria

Ruling places BP in breach of its loan agreements, say campaigners

9 March 2011

A BP-led consortium is breaking international rules governing the human rights responsibilities of multinational companies in its operations on the controversial Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline, the UK Government ruled today.

7 January 2011

Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House are challenging the blanket immunity from prosecution given by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to BAE Systems as part of its February 2010 plea bargain settlement with the company.

21 December 2010

Mr Justice Bean pulled apart the “loosely and perhaps hastily drafted” settlement agreement reached between BAE Systems and the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in February 2010.  He sentenced the company for concealing that it was making payments to a Tanzania-based agent "with the intention that he should have free rein to make such payments to such people as he thought fit to secure the radar contract” for BAE from the government of Tanzania.

Sentencing at Crown Court on 20 December 2010

23 November 2010

Arms company BAE Systems today pleaded guilty at the City of Westminster magistrates court in London to minor charges of false accounting relating to its controversial sale of military radar equipment to Tanzania in 1999. The sale has been surrounded by allegations of corruption.

as Serious Fraud Office brings plea bargain settlement to court

22 November 2010

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is going to Court on Tuesday 23 November (at the City of Westminster Magistrates Court in London) to seek approval of its plea bargain settlement made with BAE Systems in February this year over the company’s sale of a military radar system to Tanzania in 1999. (At this preliminary hearing, a date will be set for a final hearing in 2011.)

but withdraw legal challange
The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

8 April 2010

Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House withdrew their application for a judicial review of the 5 February 2010 decision by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to enter a controversial plea bargain settlement with BAE Systems and to drop "conspiracy to corrupt" charges against a BAE former agent. They concluded they were unable to appeal against the 22 March 2010 refusal by a High Court judge to grant permission to bring the legal challenge. Nonetheless, both CAAT and The Corner House will continue to raise questions about the settlement and the process leading up to it.

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

24 March 2010

A High Court judge, the Honourable Mr Justice Collins, refused to grant permission to Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House to bring a full judicial review hearing against the decision by the UK Serious Fraud Office to make a controversial plea bargain settlement with BAE Systems.

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

1 March 2010

The High Court granted an injunction prohibiting the Director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) from taking any further steps in its February 2010 plea bargain settlement with BAE Systems. The injunction is in force until the Court decides whether or not to give permission to Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House to apply for a judicial review of the settlement.

PRESS RELEASE

Judicial review papers lodged
The Corner House and CAAT

26 February 2010

Lawyers acting for Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House lodged papers on 26 February 2010 at the High Court in London asking for an injunction to delay the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) from seeking court approval for its controversial plea bargain settlement with BAE Systems pending the outcome of a Judicial Review. They lodged papers requesting the Judicial Review at the same time.

against UK Serious Fraud Office's BAE settlement
CAAT and The Corner House

12 February 2010

Lawyers acting on behalf of Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House issued a letter to the Director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) laying out their intention to request a judicial review of the 5 February 2010 decision by the SFO to enter a plea agreement with BAE. The basis for the legal challenge is that the SFO failed properly to apply prosecution guidance (including its own guidance). In particular, the plea agreement reached fails to reflect the seriousness and extent of BAE's alleged offending, which includes corruption and bribery, and to provide the court with adequate sentencing powers.

Denial of justice say NGOs
CAAT and The Corner House

5 February 2010

Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House expressed disappointment, anger and outrage at the announcement of a settlement between the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and BAE Systems of the long-running investigations into alleged bribery and corruption in BAE's arms deals in several African and European countries.

CAAT and The Corner House

1 October 2009

1 October 2009: Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House welcomed the decision of the Director of the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to begin prosecution proceedings against BAE Systems for "offences relating to overseas corruption". The SFO has been investigating the business activities of BAE Systems in African and Eastern European countries.

Joint Committee

28 July 2009

In March 2009, the UK government published a Draft Bribery Bill, which a Joint Committee comprising members of both Houses of Parliament scrutinised in May and June, taking oral and written evidence from a wide range of individuals and organisations, including The Corner House. The Committee's final report, published on 28 July 2009, "strongly support[s]" the draft Bribery Bill. "It represents an important, indeed overdue, step in reforming the United Kingdom's bribery laws, which have been a source of criticism at home and abroad for more than thirty years."

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

29 May 2009

BAE Systems, the UK's largest arms company, has cancelled all its public insurance for its controversial arms sales to Saudi Arabia. The company's decision came to light as a result of legal correspondence between The Corner House/Campaign Against Arms Trade with the UK Export Credits Guarantee Department (ECGD) and subsequent parliamentary questions tabled by Vince Cable MP. By cancelling its insurance, BAE has let the ECGD off the hook from possible legal action over its support for the Saudi deals.

Mark Thomas

18 March 2009

At the beginning of 2009, activist comedian Mark Thomas decided to do a weekly show about the meltdown of the world's economy. "It's The Economy Stupid" combines stand up comedy with interviews with invited guests -- economists, academics, MPs, trade unionists, journalists (and members of The Corner House) -- on stage to explain what happened, find out what is going on, and explore what we can do about it.

Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House

17 October 2008

On 17 October 2008, the OECD's Working Group on Bribery issued a report, which holds that the UK authorities did breach their obligations under the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention when the Serious Fraud Office cancelled its investigation into arms deals between BAE Systems and Saudi Arabia in December 2006. The Corner House and the Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) issued this press release of the report, which vindicates their judicial review of the decision.

Lack of checks and balances when criminal prosecutions halted on national security grounds
The Corner House

31 July 2008

The Corner House issued this response to the report by the Joint Committee of the UK Parliament scrutinising the draft Constitutional Renewal Bill.

The Corner House and CAAT

30 July 2008

The Corner House and CAAT issued this press release after the House of Lords (the UK's highest court) overturned the High Court's ruling of April 2008 that the Director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) had acted unlawfully when he terminated a corruption investigation into BAE Systems' arms deals with Saudi Arabia. The law lords judgment confirms that the UK is in flagrant breach of its duty to implement and give force to the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention.

in response to Law Lords' judgments in BAE-Saudi appeal
The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

30 July 2008

This statement was issued in response to the House of Lords overturning the judgment of the High Court that the Director of the Serious Fraud Office acted legally in terminating the SFO's investigation into alleged corruption by BAE Systems in its dealings in Saudi Arabia.

The Corner House and CAAT

24 April 2008

On 24 April 2008, the UK High Court formally quashed the Serious Fraud Office's (SFO) decision to drop its corruption investigation into arms deals between BAE Systems and Saudi Arabia. It also gave the SFO permission to appeal to the House of Lords against its 10th April 2008 ruling that the SFO's termination of the investigation was unlawful.

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

10 April 2008

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade issued this press release after the High Court ruled, in response to a judicial review brought by both groups, that the Director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) had acted unlawfully when he stopped a corruption investigation into BAE Systems' arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House

10 April 2008

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade held a press conference at the offices of the groups' solicitors, Leigh Day & Co, following the High Court ruling in response to the judicial review brought by both groups. This statement was read out at the press conference.

The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade

4 April 2008

Even before the judgement has been given on the landmark judicial review of the decision by the UK's Serious Fraud Office to halt its BAE-Saudi Arabia corruption investigation, the UK Government has introduced draft legislation whose effect would be to prevent in future such a judicial review -- and even such an investigation. The Corner House and CAAT are calling upon the public and parliamentarians to voice their concerns about the draft Constitutional Renewal Bill.

CAAT and The Corner House

14 February 2008

This press release highlights the documents released in the High Court on 14 February 2008 revealing that Britain's biggest arms company, BAE Systems, wrote to the Attorney General on a "strictly private and confidential" basis urging him to halt the Serious Fraud Office investigation into allegations that BAE had bribed Saudi officials to secure the Al Yamamah arms deal.

Of Serious Fraud Office decision to stop BAE-Saudi corruption inquiry
The Corner House and CAAT

8 February 2008

On 14th February 2008, the High Court will hear the judicial review of the Serious Fraud Office's decision to terminate its investigation into alleged corruption by BAE Systems in recent arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

The Corner House and CAAT

21 December 2007

Documents released in the UK High Court indicate that the Serious Fraud Office investigation into BAE's Saudi arms deals was dropped only after the then Prime Minister Tony Blair sent a personal minute to the Attorney General Lord Goldsmith. They show that Goldsmith did not believe that the case should be dropped in response to alleged Saudi threats to withdraw intelligence and security co-operation.

Campaign Against Arms Trade and The Corner House

9 November 2007

On Friday 9 November 2007, two High Court judges granted permission to Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House to bring a full judicial review hearing against the UK Government's decision in December 2006 to cut short a Serious Fraud Office (SFO) investigation into alleged corruption by BAE Systems in recent arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

BAE-Saudi arms deals investigation legal challenge
The Corner House and CAAT

8 November 2007

At an oral hearing in the UK High Court on Friday 9 November 2007, lawyers for Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) and The Corner House will argue that permission should be granted for a full judicial review hearing against the UK Government's decision to cut short an investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) into alleged corruption by BAE Systems in recent arms deals with Saudi Arabia.

over Sakhalin II oil-and-gas project
WWF-UK and The Corner House

15 August 2007

On 15 August 2007, WWF and The Corner House filed for a judicial review of a legally-binding, but until recently undisclosed, decision in March 2004 by the UK Government's Export Credits Guarantee Department (ECGD) to support the Sakhalin II oil-and-gas project off the far eastern coast of Russia.

Update on proposed judicial review, 25 January 2007
CAAT and The Corner House

25 January 2007

On Friday 19 January 2007, CAAT and The Corner House received the Government's formal response to their proposed judicial review challenge of the Serious Fraud Office decision to discontinue the investigation into BAE Systems.

The letter sent by the Government's solicitors seeks to defend the decision. There is nothing in that letter which has dissuaded CAAT and The Corner House from their view that the decision was unlawful and is susceptible to challenge in the High Court.

NGO letter to Prime Minister Tony Blair, 15 January 2007
National and international NGOs

15 January 2007

140 NGOs from 37 countries called upon Prime Minister Tony Blair to re-open the investigation of the Al Yamamah defence contract between BAE and Saudi Arabia government because of the impacts of corruption on democracy, sustainable development, human rights and poverty.

CAAT and The Corner House

18 December 2006

On 18 December 2006, The Corner House and Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT) began a legal challenge to the decision by the UK's Serious Fraud Office to drop the investigation into bribery allegations involving BAE Systems Plc in Saudi Arabia.

The Corner House

21 October 2005

On 21st October 2005, the ECGD announced its provisional response to the public consultation on its anti-corruption procedures. The ECGD proposes to take some steps towards re-strengthening its procedures, but has still stopped short in some key areas.

The Corner House and others

30 June 2005

In June 2005, several trade unions and NGOs signed a joint statement calling on the UK government to take immediate steps to meet its international obligations on corruption by taking 12 detailed actions.

The Corner House

25 January 2005

In December 2004, The Corner House began legal proceedings against the Export Credits Guarantee Department, claiming it had weakened its anti-corruption rules after consulting corporations only. It was awarded the first-ever full "protective costs order" to challenge the changed rules: The Corner House would not have to pay the Department's legal costs, even if it lost, because the challenge was in the public interest.

A memorandum from concerned non-governmental organisations and parliamentarians
concerned NGOs

31 July 2000

In July 1999, the UK Secretary of State for Trade and Industry announced a Review of the mission and status of the UK Export Credits Guarantees Department (ECGD). This Memorandum, signed by 35 UK NGOs and parliamentarians, sets out proposals to reform the ECGD so as to bring it in line with the stated policies of the UK government on sustainable development, human rights, open government and putting ethics “at the centre” of foreign policy.