Petrofac Pleads Guilty In Bribery Case, Awaiting Sentencing

Petrofac Pleads Guilty In Bribery Case, Awaiting Sentencing
Petrofac has reached a plea agreement with the UK Serious Fraud Office concerning its investigation into the company's historical use of agents in the Middle East.

Oilfield services firm Petrofac has reached a plea agreement with the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) concerning its investigation into the company's historical use of agents in the Middle East.

Petrofac attended Westminster Magistrates’ Court where the company was charged with seven separate offenses of failing to prevent bribery between 2011 and 2017.

The company said that it plead guilty to seven counts of failing to prevent former Petrofac group employees from offering or making payments to agents in relation to projects awarded between 2012 and 2015 in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. These offers or payments were made between 2011 and 2017. Petrofac did indicate that all employees involved in the charges have left the business.

A sentencing hearing is scheduled to take place at Southwark Crown Court commencing on Monday, September 27, 2021.

“The penalty will be determined at the sole discretion of the Court. It may take into account submissions by the company as to its ability to pay, along with the SFO’s recognition that Petrofac is a changed company with transformed leadership, personnel, compliance, and assurance processes,” Petrofac stated.

“This was a deeply regrettable period of Petrofac’s history. We are committed to ensuring it will never happen again. We have fundamentally overhauled our compliance regime, as well as the people, and the culture that supports it,” Petrofac chairman René Medori said.

“Our comprehensive program of corporate renewal has been acknowledged by the SFO. Petrofac has been living under the shadow of the past, but today it is a profoundly different business, in which stakeholders can be assured of our commitment to the highest standards of business ethics, wherever we operate,” Medori added.

“With my new management team, we are rebuilding the company into a new Petrofac that’s relevant for the future, across both traditional and new energies, built on a foundation of the highest ethical standards,” Petrofac chief executive Sami Iskander stated.

Worth reminding, former senior Petrofac executive David Lufkin earlier this year pleaded guilty to three further bribery offenses regarding deals in the UAE. This is on top of the 11 charges Lufkin plead guilty to in February 2019.

The offenses were related to corrupt offers and payments made to agents by Lufkin between 2012 and 2018 to influence the award of contracts to Petrofac in the UAE worth around $3.3 billion.

Also, Abu Dhabi-based giant ADNOC suspended Petrofac from competing for new ADNOC contracts in March until further notice over a bribery case related to contracts awarded in 2013 and 2014.

To contact the author, email bojan.lepic@rigzone.com


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