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Rolls-Royce bags ex-Herbies man to lead bribery review

By James Barnes

11 January 2013 at 11:39 BST

British aircraft engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce has appointed veteran lawyer and Conservative peer Lord Gold to head a review of its anti-corruption procedures amid allegations of bribery in overseas markets.

An alleged sweetener in Indonesia

An alleged sweetener in Indonesia Fedor Selivanov/Shutterstock.com

Lord Gold -- a lawyer at London global firm Herbert Smith for 37 years and senior partner at the firm between 2005-10 -- will lead a ‘review of compliance procedures’ at the FSTE 100 company and report directly to the board’s ethics committee, reports The Daily Telegraph newspaper in London.


The appointment comes after Rolls allegedly made payments to an executive in China for handling orders worth more than £1 billion for engines supplied to Air China in 2005 and China Eastern Airlines in 2010.
Bribery claims involving Rolls-Royce in Indonesia were also made by former-employee-turned-whistleblower Dick Taylor, who alleged the company gave £20 million and a Rolls-Royce car to the son of a former president to help win contracts.
Rolls declined to comment on the allegations, but said it would fully co-operate with Britain’s Serious Fraud Office.

Exceptional prospects

Speaking in December, chief executive John Rishton said: ‘I want to make it crystal clear that neither I nor the board will tolerate improper business conduct of any sort and will take all necessary action to ensure compliance. This is a company with exceptional prospects and I will not accept any behaviour that undermines its future success.’
Lord Gold has not been given a specific date to complete the review.


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