Public Bodies Corrupt Practices Act 1889
1889 CHAPTER 69
An Act for the more effectual Prevention and Punishment of Bribery and Corruption of and by Members, Officers, or Servants of Corporations, Councils, Boards, Commissions, or other Public Bodies.
[30th August 1889]
Whereasit is expedient more effectually to provide for the prevention and punishment of bribery and corruption of and by members, officers, or servants of corporations, councils, boards, commissions, and other public bodies:
Be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:
1Corruption in office a misdemeanor.
(1)Every person who shall by himself or by or in conjunction with any other person, corruptly solicit or receive, or agree to receive, for himself, or for any other person, any gift, loan, fee, reward, or advantage whatever as an inducement to, or reward for, or otherwise on account of any member, officer, or servant of a public body as in this Act defined, doing or forbearing to do anything in respect of any matter or transaction whatsoever, actual or proposed, in which the said public body is concerned, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
(2)Every person who shall by himself or by or in conjunction with any other person corruptly give, promise, or offer any gift, loan, fee, reward, or advantage whatsoever to any person, whether for the benefit of that person or of another person, as an inducement to or reward for or otherwise on account of any member, officer, or servant of any public body as in this Act defined, doing or forbearing to do anything in respect of any matter or transaction whatsoever, actual or proposed, in which, such public body as aforesaid is concerned, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.
Penalty for offences.
2Any person on conviction for offending as aforesaid shall, at the discretion of the court before which he is convicted,—
(a)be liable to be imprisoned for any period not exceeding two years, with or without hard labour, or to pay a fine not exceeding five hundred pounds, or to both such imprisonment and such fine ; and
(b)in addition be liable to be ordered to pay to such body, and in such manner as the court directs, the amount or value of any gift, loan, fee, or reward received by him or any part thereof; and
(c)be liable to be adjudged incapable of being elected or appointed to any public office for seven years from the date of his conviction, and to forfeit any such office held by him at the time of his conviction ; and
(d)in the event of a second conviction for a like offence he shall, in addition to the foregoing penalties, be liable to be adjudged to be for ever incapable of holding any public office, and to be incapable for seven years of being registered as an elector, or voting at an election either of members to serve in Parliament or of members of any public body, and the enactments for preventing the voting and registration of persons declared by reason of corrupt practices to be incapable of voting shall apply to a person adjudged in pursuance of this section to be incapable of voting ; and
(e)if such person is an officer or servant in the employ of any public body upon such conviction he shall, at the discretion of the court, be liable to forfeit his right and claim to any compensation or pension to which he would otherwise have been entitled.
(1)Where an offence under this Act is also punishable under any other enactment, or at common law, such offence, may be prosecuted and punished either under this Act, or under the other enactment, or at common law, but so that no person shall be punished twice for the same offence.
(2)A person shall not be exempt from punishment under this Act by reason of the invalidity of the appointment or election of a person to a public office.
4Restriction on prosecution.
(1)A prosecution for an offence under this Act shall not be instituted except by or with the consent of the Attorney General.
(2)In this section the expression "Attorney General" means the Attorney or Solicitor General for England, and as respects Scotland means the Lord Advocate, and as respects Ireland means the Attorney or Solicitor General for Ireland.
Expenses of prosecution.
5The expenses of the prosecution of an offence against this Act shall be defrayed in like manner as in the case of a felony.
Jurisdiction of quarter sessions.
6A court of general or quarter sessions shall in England have jurisdiction to inquire of, hear, and determine an offence under this Act.
7In this Act—
The expression " public body" means any council of a county or county of a city or town, any council of a municipal borough, also any board, commissioners, select vestry, or other body which has power to act under and for the purposes of any Act relating to local government, or the public health, or to poor law or otherwise to administer money raised by rates in pursuance of any public general Act, but does not include any public body as above defined existing elsewhere than in the United Kingdom : The expression " public office " means any office or employment of a person as a member, officer, or servant of such public body: The expression " person " includes a body of persons, corporate or un incorporate: The expression " advantage " includes any office or dignity, and any forbearance to demand any money or money's worth or valuable thing, and includes any aid, vote, consent, or influence, or pretended aid, vote, consent, or influence, and also includes any promise or procurement of or agreement or endeavour to procure, or the holding out of any expectation of any gift, loan, fee, reward, or advantage, as before defined.
Application of Act to Scotland.
8In the application of this Act to Scotland the sheriff and sheriff substitute shall have jurisdiction, to try any offence under this Act; and
The expression " misdemeanor " shall mean "crime and offence;." and The expression " municipal borough " shall mean any " burgh."
50 & 51 Vict. c.20 not to apply to trial under Act.
9The provisions of the Criminal Law and Procedure (Ireland) Act, 1887, shall not apply to any trial under the provisions of this Act.
10This Act may be cited as the Public Bodies Corrupt Practices Act, 1889.