Bribery in football and corruption at the IAAF – How does the Bribery Act 2010 apply?

Published 09 March 2017 By: Neil Swift, Gareth Farrelly, Craig Hogg

Bribe being expected with a handshake

The turn of 2016/2017 saw several high-profile corruption allegations levelled against football and athletics executives.

These instances, outlined in more detail below, raise questions firstly about the nature of the allegations, and secondly how the Bribery Act 2010 might apply in such circumstances.  Accordingly, this article looks at:

  • The Daily Telegraph football sting and the resulting police investigation into bribery;
  • The IAAF’s findings against its former deputy general secretary, Nick Davies;
  • The Bribery Act 2010 and how it might apply in such circumstances.


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Neil Swift

Neil Swift

Neil Swift is a Partner in the business crime department at Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP. He qualified in 1999 and became a Partner in 2010.  He has a broad range of experience in the fraud area, advising individual and corporate clients in relation to investigations and prosecutions by all major law enforcement bodies, including in particular the Serious Fraud Office, HM Revenue & Customs, and the Office of Fair Trading (now Competition and Markets Authority).
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Gareth Farrelly

Gareth Farrelly

Gareth joined Bermans in 2018, following qualification as a commercial litigation lawyer in the City and previous to that a successful career as a Premiership and international footballer.

He has been involved in numerous transfers and disputes concerning current and former players, including a leading Court of Arbitration for Sport case which resulted in changes being made to the rules. In addition, he is a member of the Football Association’s Judicial Panel and sits on both the Chairman’s Panel and the Football Panel. He is a member of Sports Resolutions’ independent Panel of Arbitrators and Mediators and Court of Arbitration for Sport Arbitrator.

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Craig Hogg

Craig Hogg

Associate, Business Crime department, Peters & Peters

At Peters & Peters, in the Business Crime department, Craig has assisted on cases involving extradition and Interpol Red Notices, banking fraud (including a Serious Fraud Office investigation into a major multinational bank), Libor, and FX manipulation following a major US Department of Justice investigation.

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