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First Bribery Act prosecution

A former magistrates’ court administrative officer has admitted taking a £500 bribe to “get rid” of a speeding charge. This is the first prosecution and conviction under the Bribery Act 2010 – a UK-wide piece of legislation sponsored by the UK Ministry of Justice, which came into force on 1st July 2011.

Munir Patel pleaded guilty at Southwark Crown Court to section 2 of the Bribery Act 2010 for requesting and receiving a bribe of £500 for offering to ‘get rid’ of a speeding charge for someone. He also pleaded guilty to misconduct in public office for other similar offences. The seven charges of possessing false garage receipts for use in fraud have been ordered to lie on file.

Gaon Hart, Senior Crown Advocate for the CPS Special Crime and Counter Terrorism Division, said:

“This prosecution is the first of its kind under the Bribery Act 2010 which has provided a significant weapon in the armoury of prosecutors that enables us to focus on the bribery element rather than general misconduct behaviour. We will continue to target those who act corruptly purely for personal gain and tailor the charge to reflect their wrong-doing.”

Munir Patel will be sentenced on 11th November 2011 at Southwark Crown Court.