International - Written by on Wednesday, June 8, 2011 4:06 - 0 Comments

BREAKING: SFO Announcement expected today

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The Times reports that the SFO is to be given a 12 month reprieve when Theresa May announces plans for a National Crime Agency later today.

Theresa May trailed the reprieve in an interview with the Financial Times two weeks ago.

The SFO will be deeply disappointed that the cloud of uncertainty surrounding its future has still not lifted.

In practical terms the enforcement strategy around the Bribery Act is at least as important as the law itself. 

The SFO has been involved in an unprecedented engagement programme to communicate its common sense enforcement approach.  With the threat the SFO may be dismantled in 12 months time the Bribery Act enforcement strategy remains unknown in the long term.

Opinion

We and many others fear dismantling the SFO would turn the clock back nearly three decades to return to a discredited and broken system. 

Importantly the enforcement of the new law continues to be as uncertain as the future of its enforcer, the SFO.  

The Bribery Act is one of the most important pieces of criminal legislation and is weeks away from entry into force.  

The SFO and UK PLC deserve the certainty of knowing that they have the confidence of government to enforce the new law for the forseeable future.

Image © Crown Copyright 2011

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