Under the Bribery Act 2010, a bribe is a ‘financial or other advantage’ offered, promised or given to induce a person to perform a relevant function or activity improperly, or to reward them for doing so. The Act makes it a criminal offence to:
- offer, promise or give a bribe
- request, agree to receive or accept a bribe
- bribe a foreign public official to obtain or retain business or a business advantage
- (by an organisation) fail to prevent bribery by those acting on its behalf (‘associated persons’) to obtain or retain business or a business advantage for the organisation.
Small payments made to government officials or others to make something happen, or happen sooner, (commonly called facilitation payments) are likely to be bribes and unlawful under the Act.
Under the Bribery Act, individuals can be prosecuted for accepting bribes or offering bribes. In addition, the University can be prosecuted for failing to prevent bribery committed to obtain or retain business or a business advantage for the University by an employee or other individual or organisation performing services for the University. Colleges and Services should follow this guidance to ensure compliance with the Act.
Return to contents of Prevention of bribery and other improper conduct: Guidance for Colleges and Services.