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From Baksheesh to BriberyUnderstanding the Global Fight Against Corruption and Graft$
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T. Markus Funk and Andrew S. Boutros

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190232399

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190232399.001.0001

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4 Canada
From Baksheesh to Bribery

Andrew Boutros

Oxford University Press

Like many OECD signatory countries, Canada has a checkered and inconsistent history of enforcement in relation to bribery and corruption offenses. In the past five years, however, Canada has taken deliberate and effective steps to strengthen its enforcement regime and was recently noted as one of the “most improved” nations in anti-bribery prosecutions by the OECD. In addition to a marked increase in prosecutions, these changes include the elimination of facilitation payments as a valid defense in 2017 and amendments to the governing legislation that allows Canadian authorities to prosecute nationals for crimes committed entirely abroad. The governing legislation in Canada relating to the bribing of foreign public officials is exclusively criminal in nature and has no statute of limitations. Both bribery and bookkeeping offenses are captured under the legislation. The combination of the lack of any time-based defenses, as well as the enhanced arsenal of the liberalization of the law of jurisdiction and the increased ambit of substantive offenses, point to a more robust enforcement regime for bribery and corruption offenses in Canada going forward.

Keywords:   bribery, corruption, extraterritorial jurisdiction, public official, facilitation payments, bookkeeping, commercial bribery, indictable offenses, statute of limitations

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