Glencore pleads guilty in UK to bribery ahead of sentencing
A Glencore Plc unit pleaded guilty in a London court after the UK’s Serious Fraud Office found the commodity giant paid more than $28 million (€26.5 million) in bribes across five African countries.
Glencore last month announced it expected to pay about $1.5 billion (€1.4 billion) to settle long-running investigations into bribery and price manipulation charges in deals with the US, UK and Brazil. While the US settlements have been made public, the penalty in the UK has yet to be finalised. Sentencing has been set for November 2 and 3.
The SFO said on Tuesday that its investigation showed the commodity trader paid for preferential access to oil, including increased cargoes, valuable grades of oil and preferable dates of delivery, between 2011 and 2016.
“These actions were approved by the company across its oil operations in Nigeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea and South Sudan,” the SFO said.
The settlements have helped remove a question mark that has long overshadowed the trader’s business. But the charges and admissions of guilt painted a damning picture of how far the company, founded by US fugitive Marc Rich, has been willing to go in pursuit of profit.
The Glencore unit pleaded guilty to all seven charges brought by the SFO at the Southwark Crown Court on Tuesday.
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