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5 August 2014 | Will Green
Three men have been jailed and a fourth was given a suspended sentence for their role in bribing officials in Indonesia and Iraq to win government contracts.
Dennis Kerrison, 69, of Chertsey, Surrey, was given four years in prison; Paul Jennings, 57, of Neston, Cheshire, got two years; and Miltiades Papachristos, 51, of Thessaloniki, Greece, was sentenced to 18 months. David Turner, 59, of Newmarket, Suffolk, was given a 16-month suspended sentence and 300 hours’ unpaid work.
Turner was also ordered to pay costs of £10,000 and Jennings was told to pay £5,000.
Kerrison and Papachristos were convicted of conspiracy to commit corruption in June in relation to Indonesia, while Jennings and Turner each pleaded guilty in 2012 to three charges of conspiracy to commit corruption relating to Indonesia and Iraq. The offences took place between 2002 and 2008 and related to the paying of bribes to secure contracts to supply Innospec fuel products, including those containing harmful chemicals.
On sentencing the defendants at Southwark Crown Court judge Andrew Goymer said: “Corruption in this company was endemic, institutionalised and ingrained… but despite being a separate legal entity it is not an automated machine; decisions are made by human minds.
“None of these defendants would consider themselves in the same category as common criminals who commit crimes of dishonesty or violence… but the real harm lies in the effect on public life, the effect on community and in particular with this corruption, its effect on the environment. If a company registered or based in the UK engages in bribery of foreign officials it tarnished the reputation of this country in the international arena.”
David Green, director of the Serious Fraud Office, which investigated the case with help from other agencies, said: “This successful conclusion to a long-running investigation demonstrates the SFO’s ability and determination to bring corporate criminals to justice.”