Court told British company ferried bribes to Nigerian officials

London Southwark Crown Court Wednesday heard testimony on how Glencore, a British commodity trader, ferried bribe money in private jets to Nigerian officials.

Aside Nigeria, Glencore reportedly paid bribes to officials in Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Cameroun and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Switzerland-based company owned up to seven counts of bribery following a probe of its involvement in bribery and graft. The company’s modus operandi is to send bribe money to its Nigerian middlemen, who, in turn, would withdraw same ad ferry them in private jet to officials in other climes.

In May, Glencore pleaded guilty and accepted to pay more than $1.1 billion in fines for bribing officials of NNPC Limited. The probe revealed corrupt officials received over $28 million in bribes, in exchange for business favours in oil cargoes.

Prosecutor Alexander Healey said, “The approving and offering of bribes was an acceptable way of doing business at the company.”

Clare Montgomery, Glencore’s lawyer, said the company “unreservedly regrets the harm caused by these offences and recognises the harm caused, both at national and public levels in the African states concerned, as well as the damage caused to others,”

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