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SFO charges two former tech execs with corruption

Two former executives of a UK company that supplies technology-based products to the metals industry were charged Thursday with bribery and corruption.

Michael Sorby, a former director of Sarclad Ltd, and Adrian Leek, the company's former sales manager, appeared in Westminster Magistrates' Court in London.

The SFO charged Sorby, 72, and Leek, 39, both from Sheffield, with one count of conspiracy to corrupt contrary to Section 1 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1906, and one count of conspiracy to bribe under Section 1 of the Bribery Act 2010.

The alleged offenses happened between 2004 and 2012 and concerned "financial inducements offered to secure contracts for Sarclad, a technology provider in the metals industry," the SFO said.

The SFO started its investigation in June 2013. The agency didn't say Thursday where the offenses occurred or who else was involved.

Sarclad's technology products help metal producers reduce manufacturing costs and improve product quality.

The company's headquarters are in Rotherham (Yorkshire). It was founded in 1977 and now sells to steel manufacturers in 46 countries.

Both defendants were granted unconditional bail at Thursday's hearing.

They're scheduled to appear in the Southwark Crown Court in London on March 24.


Richard L. Cassin is the publisher and editor of the FCPA Blog. He can be contacted here.