1Bribery, whether committed in the UK or abroad, is a criminal offence under the Bribery Act 2010, which consolidates and replaces previous anti-bribery and corruption legislation. The Act introduces a new offence for commercial organisations of failing to prevent bribery. It is a defence for firms charged with this offence to show that they had adequate bribery-prevention procedures in place. The Ministry of Justice has published guidance on adequate anti-bribery procedures.
• firms which are subject to our rules SYSC 3.2.6R and SYSC 6.1.1R are under a separate, regulatory obligation to establish and maintain effective systems and controls to mitigate financial crime risk; and
• e-money institutions and payment institutions must satisfy us that they have robust governance, effective risk procedures and adequate internal control mechanisms. See E-Money Reg 6 and Payment Service Reg 6.
1Financial crime risk includes the risk of corruption as well as bribery, and so is wider than the Bribery Act’s scope. And we may take action against a firm with deficient anti-bribery and corruption systems and controls regardless of whether or not bribery or corruption has taken place. Principle 1 of our Principles for Business also requires authorised firms to conduct their business with integrity. See PRIN 2.1.1R: Principle 1.
1So while we do not prosecute breaches of the Bribery Act, we have a strong interest in the anti-corruption systems and controls of firms we supervise, which is distinct from the Bribery Act’s provisions. Firms should take this into account when considering the adequacy of their anti-bribery and corruption systems and controls.