April 29, 2022

SFO recovers more than £567,000 in crime proceeds from personal accounts linked to Petrofac bribes

On April 28, 2022, the Westminster Magistrates’ Court granted three account Forfeiture Orders and confirmed the Serious Fraud Office’s recovery of approximately £567,000 from personal accounts connected to a former fixer for the Petrofac group, an oil and gas services company based in London.  The SFO reports that the accounts were linked to Basim Al Shaikh, a now-deceased former agent that worked for Petrofac in the United Arab Emirates, who allegedly paid bribes to obtain contracts for Petrofac and laundered the bribes through two UAE companies, Gulf Development Marine Services and Northern Coast Construction Materials.  According to the SFO, the funds in the accounts had been frozen since February 3, 2021 as suspected proceeds of the crime.

In September of 2021, the SFO charged Petrofac Limited with seven separate offenses for failing to prevent bribery between 2011 and 2017 at the end of a four-year investigation into suspected bribery, corruption and money laundering by Petrofac and its subsidiaries in exchange for oil and gas for Petrofac in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE.  On October 4, 2021, Petrofac Limited pleaded guilty to seven counts for failing to prevent bribery and was ordered to pay a £47,197,640 fine, confiscation of £22,836,985, as well as £7 million in costs to the SFO.  At the same time, David Lufkin, the former Global Head of Sales for Petrofac Limited, received a two-year custodial sentence, which was reportedly suspended for 18 months, and a related confiscation order worth more than £140,000 in December 2021.

SFO News Release