LONDON: July 13, 2016. The UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has charged logistics company F.H. Bertling Ltd and seven men associated with the company with bribery, following an investigation that began in September 2014.
The SFO said the alleged activity involved an agent of Angola's state oil company Sonangol and occurred between January 2005 and December 2006.
The seven executives are former F.H. Bertling managing director Peter Ferdinand (aged 77); Marc Schweiger (46), a regional director for sub-Saharan Africa; Stephen Emler, CFO and company secretary (48); plus four former directors: Joerg Blumberg (67), Dirk Juergensen (45), Giuseppe Morreale (61), and Ralf Peterson (72).
F.H. Bertling Ltd is the UK-based subsidiary of the Hamburg-based Bertling Group.
The family-owned business with a 150-year history has produced an ethics code of conduct in several languages for its employees. The 22-page document explains in part: "To support you with this, Bertling provides training on business ethics and sustainability. Failure to follow the Code is potentially a cause for disciplinary action, which could even lead to dismissal in some circumstances. Furthermore, violations of this Code may also be violations of the law and may result in severe civil or criminal penalties for you, your manager and/or Bertling."
They seven men have been summoned to appear at London's Westminster Magistrates Court on August 04, 2016.