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TIPS Newsletter | July 2019

Dear TIPS member,

Please see attached the TIPS Newsletter for July 2019. We will have a hiatus of TIPS events in August over the summer holidays, but include in this newsletter details of TIPS affiliate events that will be taking place in the autumn. A couple of reflections on the past few months:

TIPS membership has grown to more than 200. TIPS continues to grow organically and counts among its network a range of individuals from across the private, public, government and academic spheres. The breadth of perspectives TIPS members bring to the network is one of our greatest strengths – and opportunities for learning. Please continue to promote TIPS among your networks to colleagues and friends alike.

Monthly TIPS Networking Drinks have brought 15-20 TIPS members together on a (near) monthly basis to discuss anti-corruption and related matters. The quality of discussions has been excellent, with a range of perspectives being presented on whistleblowing, deferred prosecutions agreements, corporate and social responsibility and more. If you have any ideas for a future TIPS Networking Drinks event and/or would like to present at one of these events in 2019/20, please get in touch.

We hope you enjoy the summer break and look forward to seeing you soon.

- the TIPS team


1. Upcoming Events (register on our events page)

The perils of CSR: Conflict and resistance in the extractive industries | 10 September 2019 | 7 - 9.30pm

11-13 Mandeville Place, W1U 3AJ

Shadow World – screening and discussion | 13 September 2019 | 7-10pm

Effraspace, SW2 1PX

Economics and Political Economy for a Fairer World | 20-21 September 2019 | 2pm-8pm

SOAS, Russell Square WC1H 0XG

8th Annual Anti-Bribery and Corruption Forum | 17-18 October | 9am - 5pm

Exchange House, City of London

2. Recent TIPS Events

TIPS Networking Drinks | Summary

On 22 July 2019, around 12 TIPS members met at Bangers bar in Moorgate for an evening of engaging discussion on corporate and social responsibility (CSR) and engagement with TI-UK.

Joseph Moore, engagement officer at TI-UK, presented an Indian law that requires large companies to spend 2% of net profits on CSR projects. This led into a discussion as to whether the UK should consider adopting a similar law. Attendees also shared insights from their own corporate CSR initiatives and considered how TI-UK could better benefit from such programmes. It was a hugely engaging evening.

3. Other items of interest

SFO releases its annual report and accounts for 2018/19

On 23 July 2019, the SFO’s annual report was laid before Parliament. Some emerging statistics from the year: (i) this year, there was a 53% conviction rate by defendant (17 out of 32) and an 86% conviction rate by case; (ii) 11 new criminal investigations were opened; and (iii) 14 investigations were closed without charge. The SFO’s current caseload stands at 70 cases. See report here.

TI-UK release: TI-UK calls for urgent review of “golden visa” beneficiaries following Sunday Times/dispatches investigation

On 22 July 2019, TI-UK called on the UK Government to urgently review the source of funds of individuals granted Tier 1 investor visas after an undercover investigation revealed private companies responsible for checking the provenance of a client’s money are also advising them how to mask suspicious wealth. See here

News article: London jury acquits three Sarclad staff despite corporate plea deal

On 16 July 2019, three former employees of Sarclad, a British technology business that supplies the metals industry, were acquitted of bribery charges, even though the company had accepted it failed to prevent corrupt payments over an eight-year period and – in 2016 –entered into a £6.5m DPA with the SFO. See the SFO press release here.

Press release: SFO completes DPA with Serco Geografix Ltd

On 4 July 2019, the SFO completed its fifth DPA with Serco Geografix Ltd. The DPA was notable as it was accompanied by undertakings from the parent company (Serco Group), leading to Davis J stating that this is “an important development in the use of DPAs.” Michael Bowes QC, trustee of TI-UK and big supporter of TIPS, acted for the SFO. See the SFO press release here.

Podcast: MPs’ expenses… 10 years on

10 years from the MPs expenses scandal, the Telegraph speaks to the parties involved in the publishing of the articles that shook the British political establishment. It is a fascinating look of how a newspaper handles, verifies and decides when and how to publish information received from whistle blowers. Listen here.

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