A seven year investigation by the SFO and City of London Police into the awarding of high value contracts in Egypt, Russia and Singapore has ended with a procurement engineer pleading guilty to three counts of conspiracy to corrupt.
Graham Marchment pleaded guilty to conspiring with Andrew Rybak, Ronald Saunders, Philip Hammond and others, under the Criminal Law Act 1977, to leak confidential information to bidders in exchange for bribes disguised as commissions.
Marchment had been living in the Philippines avoiding the U.K. authorities. However, when his passport expired he was forced to return, whereby he was arrested. The co-conspirators were convicted in January 2012.
Marchment received three 36 month prison sentences which will run concurrently. Issues of compensation and confiscation are to be dealt with at a later date.
Many commentators have said that conduct prior to the passing of the Bribery Act 2012 is very difficult to prosecute. This case serves as a reminder that, where it is possible, the SFO will take action on conduct which pre-dates the Bribery Act and they are prepared to play a long game to secure an arrest and ultimate conviction.