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Why is the SFO suddenly in the headlines?

Even though the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has been a very influential agency in the UK for some time, we have seen more references to the SFO and ongoing cases over the last six months than we have possibly seen over the last six years. Suddenly it seems that the SFO has "got its act together" and is now pursuing a number of industries and individual companies with regards to alleged irregularities in the business arena.

First we saw a clampdown on an alleged construction cartel, and significant fines levied, then yesterday we saw news that the SFO is very keen to take BAE Systems to court with regards to alleged bribes paid to secure Middle East arms deals. There is also speculation that a number of other, as yet unspecified, investigations are under way into other areas of the UK business arena with life at the SFO set to be very busy for the foreseeable future.

Quite why the SFO has suddenly come to life and is now looking to protect both consumers and businesses in the UK is open to debate but whatever the reason it seems that a cleanup of the UK business world is well and truly underway.

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