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22 Jun 2022

Beth Timmins, BBC News

Glencore pleads guilty to bribery charges before UK Courts for the second time

'Mining firm Glencore pleads guilty to UK bribery charges' 21 June 2022

A British subsidiary of the mining firm Glencore has pleaded guilty in a UK court to corruption offences for the second time in the last two months...

It found that bribes of over $28m (£22.8m) were paid via the Swiss-based firm's employees and agents.

The bribery charges stated that the firm's aim was for officials to "perform their functions improperly, or reward them for so doing, by unduly favouring Glencore Energy UK Limited in the allocation of crude oil cargoes, the dates crude oil would be lifted and the grades of crude oil allocated"...

A British subsidiary of the firm formally pleaded guilty on seven counts of bribery in connection with oil operations in Nigeria, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast and South Sudan on Tuesday in Southwark Crown Court...

It also still faces investigations in Switzerland and the Netherlands...

Spotlight on Corruption, a pressure group, said the charges were "hugely significant" but raised "questions about the SFO's ambition as our elite corruption-busting agency".

The NGO's legal researcher, Helen Taylor, explained that although Glencore is listed on the London Stock Exchange and headquartered in Jersey, the SFO had "only pursued" the UK subsidiary's oil operations in a handful of African countries.

"This is low-hanging fruit, given the staggering scale of corruption that has been uncovered in the company's global operations," she continued...

Part of the following timelines

Africa: UK prosecutors order Glencore to pay $310 million over bribery charges

Glencore Energy UK lawsuit (re corruption of officials across Africa, filed in the UK)