UK royal calls Serious Fraud Office “idiots”

| 02/12/2010

(The Sun): Prince Andrew allegedly called the Serious Fraud Office "idiots" for daring to investigate claims of corruption in a £43billion British arms deal with Saudi Arabia, (according to) The Sun. The UK Royal and Britain’s roving trade envoy is said to have condoned offering bribes for lucrative contracts during a meeting in Kyrgyzstan two years ago. The claims are among 250,000 secret US diplomatic documents commenting on other countries and world figures obtained by WikiLeaks. The site sparked fury by releasing them yesterday. Prince Andrew is said to have given an "astonishingly candid" performance at an official lunch in the former Soviet state in Central Asia.

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  1. John Evans says:

    Bottom line, whether we like it or not, is that there are many areas where doing business means making sure the right people get their cut of the action. From a $20 tip to get good service to bribing officials several $million to get a contract signed.

    If we did bribe the Saudis to get work for British contractors who really cares? It’s better than letting our competitors just across the channel get the business simply because they were more willing to give out backhanders than we were.

    Look at what just happened with soccer World Cup? When I worked in Russia nearly 20 years ago the most important word in business was ‘Сколько’ (Skolka) – ‘how much?’ – bribery was a way of life. That clearly hasn’t changed but obviously none of the high-powered team that put the UK case together had a clue how to deal with it – maybe they should have let BAe handle the bid?