Global Investigations Review - The law and practice of international investigations

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Friday, 23 May 2014

Corruption driving up cost of World Cup

Investigations by Brazil's Office of the Comptroller General (CGU) into projects linked to the forthcoming World Cup have saved the country around 700 million reais (US$315 million) so far, a government official told Bloomberg's Businessweek.

Sérgio Nogueira Seabra, secretary of transparency and corruption prevention at the comptroller general, admitted “there must be some corruption” in the overall World Cup project, which comes with a price tag of around US$11 billion. According to Bloomberg, the stadium cost alone is up by 2.7 billion reais compared to the 2010 estimate. “If the price is too high, there is something wrong,” Seabra said.

Foxconn staff charged with taking bribes

Five former employees at Apple supplier Foxconn Technology Group in Taiwan have been charged by local prosecutors with accepting more than US$5 million in bribes, according to reports. After a year-long investigation of Foxconn, which manufactures iPhones among other technology products, prosecutors said they had discovered evidence that staff in the procurement department received bribes from 10 suppliers between 2009 and 2011. The alleged bribes included entertainment and service fees.

Sudan to review corruption stories before publication

Sudan's government will set up a commission to check news stories about corruption before they are published, information minister Ahmed Bilal Osman announced on Friday. According to the Sudan Tribune, Osman said the commission will fact-check claims in news reports and does not intend to censor the press. The announcement came after Sudan's authorities shut down daily newspaper al-Saiha after it ran a number of stories accusing senior government officials of corruption.

Sudanese vice-president said the government is “not against the freedom of responsible media”. 

Canada sees first individual foreign bribery sentence

The first individual to be sentenced under Canada’s foreign bribery law has been handed a three-year prison term, in a high-profile case for a country that has previously struggled to enforce its corruption laws.

Ottawa businessman Nazir Karigar received the sentence after being convicted of conspiring to bribe foreign officials at Air India by Canada’s Ontario Superior Court of Justice in August last year.

Canadian lawyers told GIR they expected the court the court to emphasise general deterrence when handing down the sentence, both to set a precedent and to uphold Canada’s anti-corruption enforcement reputation abroad.

Canada's enforcement of anti-bribery and corruption laws were under discussion at a panel covering recent amendments to the country's Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act, at the IBA and ICC Anti-Corruption Conference in Mexico City last week.

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