Blair hit by Saudi bribery threat

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by whitecity, Nov 20, 2006.

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  1. I wonder which way he's going to flop with this one... :x

  2. Blackmail.
  3. Isn't this purely a matter for the Saudi's to worry about? If they are happy with the deal then where is the problem?
    BAe are only doing business in the time honoured fashion, if the customer is happy and the sales are beneficial to the UK too what's the big deal?
    Does anybody really think this isn't the way things are done?

    Excuse the sceptic in me, but is it simply because the "incentives" were not handed out to the right people? Presumably non of our esteemed politicians got a bung?
  4. Hmmmmm

    Here is the nub of the story

    In other words this is just another anonymous, no evidence anti government story where we have no way of knowing if these sources actually exist.

    Did the paper ask the SFO to comment on the story - perhaps to see if Number 10 HAD applied pressure to have the case stopped??? On the face of it the answer seems to be no.

    This is what the story should be about

    BAe have allegedly bribed the Saudis for over 20 years to buy British goods, but instead of reporting a middle class, white collar crime the Times prefers to try and give the story an anti government slant :roll:
  5. Ha there actually been a crime here though?
    Its obviously not a legal problem for the Saudi's, its just an expensive (and it would appear justified) kind of corporate entertainment.
    If the contractor (in this case BAe) has to spend £60million to secure a deal of £40billion then its money well spent.
    Sorry if I am being dim here, but where is the foul?
  6. If a business uses some of its money to entertain without that entertainment being a condition of obtaining preferential treatment, the it is corporate entertainment.

    If the entertainment is a condition of obtaining an advantage, then it is corruption - fraud
  7. I fully agree, if it was in the UK. But it appears that this is perfectly acceptable to the Saudi government, if that is the case what makes it any different to buying a franchise for example?
    Not being pedantic, simply cannot see an issue. BAe is happy, the Saudi's are happy and as the transaction is taking part in a country who's government is happy with it.
    It seems obvious that it is a normal way to do business, has any law actually been broken here if its not an issue with the Saudi's and proper export licences have been applied?
  8. Sven as always your unquestioning loyalty to the Dear Leader is touching, however the Sunday Times is not the Daily Mail or the Sun. It is Britain’s leading Sunday Broadsheet with a proven International track record of high quality Investigative Journalism. Just because YOU don't like what it says it does not mean that it is not true (you really are 100% new labour). Many people talk to them 'off the record' and prove what they are saying by showing documents (which can be then produced in court if required)- the reason they go 'off the record' is the sheer vindictive nature of this Governments abuse of power; be you a heckling 86 year old, a scientist, a man wearing a T shirt or simply reading the names of the dead next to the Cenotaph.

    Perhaps you would be happier only taking your news from New Labour and MoD press releases and ‘fact sheets’.

    And if this is not true why all Tony and New Labour have to do is to go to Court under oath and sue – like the Tories did with the Guardian……….lose and do the time like real men.
  9. It's got nowt to do with us. It's a Saudi issue and there's no way we should interfere.
  10. :evil: BAE are so great...............(given that we buy our TaT from them). that the loss of Saudi business is nothing. The towering intellects of the Government will already have solved the problem of job losses; jobless , call 'Grab a Grant' or GaG for short.
  11. o ffs.

    your dealing and selling armaments to an unelected despotic regime, backhanders and sweetners are the main rules for a sale.
    this happens in the majority of these types of nations, its nothing new.

    the fact you are selling them weapons in the first place is the greater crime.
  12. Jagman wrote

    "It seems obvious that it is a normal way to do business, has any law actually been broken here if its not an issue with the Saudi's and proper export licences have been applied?"

    The answer is that under UK law yes laws have been broken. A UK company or citizen commits a crime by paying a bribe or even "facilitating payments" (paying someone a small amount to do their job in a timely manner) anywhere in the world even if they are breaking no local laws or such payments are totally accepted local practice.

    Recently had to sit through 2 hours on this from our corporate compliance people. The UK laws are about the toughest on this in the world.

    Trying to create a fair and transparent playing field for companies seems a commendable enough goal. Would we want our military to be provided kit from the supplier who pays the biggest kickbacks rather than the best quality :? Guess having a law and being able to enforce it are pretty different.

    The other problem is that the UK law tries to go way too far. In Thailand I had to pay a small fee to get a phone line in a reasonable time and DHL threatened to hold up packages unless I paid a fukcing extra charge. Same story with customs clearance in Sri Lanka or getting through the quick immigration line in Jakarta. In cambodia the express visa they required looked remarkably like a US 20 buck note. Making any of these payments saves a lot of hassle but is a crime for a UK citizen.
  13. Hmm, I think this might well be a storm in a teacup. The Saudis aren't going to want bad press for bailing out of contracts- bad for business etc.

    However, if this is gen, it sort of begs the question of how much Saudi money is tied up in The City?