Australia’s enforcement of the foreign bribery offence
Australia takes enforcement of the foreign bribery offence seriously.
The OECD publishes enforcement data from the parties to the Anti-Bribery Convention, including Australia, annually.
Concluded foreign bribery cases in Australia are outlined below:
Radiance International (2020)
In February 2020, the director of Australian company Radiance International Pty Ltd pleaded guilty to 2 charges of causing bribes to be paid to foreign public officials. This followed a three year investigation which uncovered more than $100,000 worth of bribes paid to foreign public officials in Nauru. In August 2020, the individual was sentenced to a custodial sentence of 2 years and 6 months to be served by way of an Intensive Corrections Order, with an additional condition of 400 hours of community service.
Find out more about the Radiance International prosecution.
In September 2017, 3 individuals were convicted by the NSW Supreme Court of conspiracy to bribe an Iraqi foreign public official to secure infrastructure contracts for their company Lifese Pty Ltd. All 3 individuals pleaded guilty. One individual, the middle man who facilitated the bribe to the Iraqi foreign public official, was sentenced to 4 years’ imprisonment with a fixed non-parole period of 2 years. On appeal the remaining 2 individuals, who were the directors of Lifese, were sentenced to imprisonment for 3 years and 4 months with a fixed non-parole period of 1 year and 8 months and fined $250,000 each.
Securency and Note Printing Australia (2011)
In Australia’s first successful foreign bribery prosecution, Securency International Pty Ltd (Securency) and Note Printing Australia Pty Ltd (NPA) each pleaded guilty in October 2011 to three charges of conspiracy to commit foreign bribery. Securency’s offending occurred in Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam. NPA’s offending occurred in Indonesia, Malaysia and Nepal. In July 2012, Securency was sentenced to fines totalling $480,000 and NPA was sentenced to fines totalling $450,000. The companies also paid a combined total of $21,666,482 in pecuniary penalty orders.
Three individuals were also convicted of conspiracy to bribe a foreign public official, including the former CEO of Securency who was also convicted of false accounting. Two further individuals (including the former CFO of Securency) were also convicted of false accounting.
Find out more about the Securency and Note Printing Australia prosecution- external site.