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Glencore Admits to Dodgy Dealings in Africa

A British subsidiary of Glencore formally pleaded guilty on Tuesday to the seven charges of bribery brought against the mining and commodities trader by the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO), which relate to the firm’s oil operations in Africa. Glencore Energy confessed to paying $28 million in bribes to secure preferential access to oil, including increased cargoes, valuable grades of oil and preferable dates of delivery in Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and South Sudan. The company, which also admitted to generating illicit profits between 2011 and 2016, will be sentenced on November 2 and 3, the SFO said. The successful prosecution is the SFO’s third corporate conviction under the 2010 Bribery Act and makes Glencore the first company to admit to paying off an institution or person under those rules. The anti-corruption office is still mulling prosecutions against individuals as it, so far, has not targeted any people at the company, triggering criticism.