The British-based, multinational aerospace giant refused repeated requests from FRONTLINE for an interview, but finally, on March 13, 2009, emailed this statement to correspondent Lowell Bergman.
Prime Minister Blair's Memo (PDF file)
Prime Minister Blair's Dec. 8, 2006 "Personal Minute" to Attorney General Lord Peter Goldsmith regarding the BAE case. Goldsmith showed the memo to his subordinate Robert Wardle, head of the Serious Fraud Office, which was investigating the case. The memo was among many documents made public in a lawsuit brought by two anti-corruption groups who argued the BAE investigation was quashed unlawfully. The plaintiffs won the case, but the decision was overturned on appeal by Britain's highest court.
Saudi Money Transfers - Suspicious Activity Report
This document reveals what appears to be a personal use of funds from the Al Yamamah arms deal by Prince Bandar bin Sultan. It shows payments totaling $17 million to an architect in Saudi Arabia for work on one of the prince's palaces. The funds were sent from one of the Saudi Embassy's Riggs Bank accounts into which $2 billion in Al Yamamah funds were transferred.
FRONTLINE/World: The Business of Bribes
Parallel to FRONTLINE's documentary, Black Money, FRONTLINE and its international newsmagzine FRONTLINE/World launched this online investigation. It offers breaking news stories and a wide range of video and print reports, including Lowell Bergman discussing international corruption, background on the victims of corruption and a map of corruption cases worldwide.
A joint project of British activist groups The Corner House and the Campaign Against Arms Trade, this site features a detailed timeline of the judicial review following the SFO's decision to drop its investigation into the Al Yamamah contract. (Last updated February 2009)
De-greasing those palms
The Economist laments Britain's "caddish reputation" in international business and welcomes a new bribery bill proposed by the Ministry of Justice. (March 26, 2009)
At Siemens, Bribery Was Just a Line Item
This New York Times article -- a joint report from the Times, FRONTLINE and ProPublica -- details how entrenched corruption had become at the German engineering giant. In December 2008, Siemens paid a fine of $1.6 billion, "the largest fine for bribery in modern corporate history." (Dec. 20, 2008)
Bribery Scandal Rocks Big Oil
MSN Money published this article by ProPublica and FROTNLINE laying out the possible ramifcations of the guilty plea of Albert "Jack" Stanley, former CEO of Kellogg Brown & Root, on bribery charges. (Sept. 9, 2008)
The Big Payoff
This 1976 Time article details the fallout from the news that Lockheed Aircraft Corp. had made payments to foreign leaders in Europe and Japan. The Lockheed scandal was one of several post-Watergate revelations that led the United States to ban foreign bribery with the 1977 Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Time followed up in 1981, examining what impact that law had had on American companies' dealings abroad.
A Washington Bank In a Global Mess
The New York Times profiles Riggs Bank and its chairman Joe Allbritton. Riggs hosted the accounts of the Saudi Embassy in Washington, D.C., until early 2004, "after huge cash transfers by Prince Bandar in and out of his personal accounts aroused fresh concerns at the bank about the nature of the transactions." (April 11, 2004)
The Sultan of Sway
Reviewing a biography of Prince Bandar bin Sultan, Portfolio examines how the then-fighter pilot's attempts to broker an arms deal with the United States was pivotal to his ascent within the Saudi royal family. It was the ultimate failure of that deal that led Bandar to craft the Al Yamamah deal with the United Kingdom. (December 2008)
Government and International Resources
World Bank: The Costs of Corruption
The World Bank estimates that $1 trillion in bribes are paid each year, according to this 2004 article. Elsewhere on their site, the bank's global governance director breaks down this figure and blogs about corruption and governance issues. The World Bank also runs BRIBEline, "a secure and anonymous place to report bribe requests."