Munir Patel, a Redbridge Magistrates Court clerk who was the first person to be convicted under the 2010 Bribery Act, has been sentenced to three years for bribery and six years for misconduct in public office, his sentences to be served concurrently.
In over a year of misconduct, Mr Patel took money from 53 offenders for keeping their cases off a Court database. The offences in this case occurred in the context of a UK public authority. However, the scope of the Act encompasses conduct in the private as well as the public sectors, both here and outside the jurisdiction. We have yet to see the first prosecution against a commercial organisation for failing to prevent bribery. That will be a significant case and the approach of both the prosecution and the Court when it surfaces will be watched with considerable interest.
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