Producers Handbook

Bribery Act 2010

The Bribery Act 2010 came into force in July 2011 and consolidates and reforms UK corruption legislation. The Act creates four new offences; the most important for programme makers are contained within sections 1 and 6. An offence may be committed under section 1 when a promise, financial or otherwise, is made to someone to "perform improperly", in either their public or private functions. An offence may be committed under section 6 where the promise is made to a foreign public official with the intention of gaining a business advantage. Facilitation payments, payments to induce an official to perform a function they already have a duty to perform, are bribes. A person who is forced to make a facilitated payment to protect against loss of life, limb or liberty or to protect their safety is unlikely to be prosecuted and in any event there is a legal defence of duress. If you are aware of any payment or promise of payment (or other advantage) which may fall under the above provisions, or if any request for payment (or any other advantage) is sought which might be caught by the Act, this must be reported as soon as possible to the independent production company you are working for and to the programme lawyer at Channel 4.

For further guidance please see 'Hostile Filming Guidelines' and 'Issues Requiring Reference-up'.