Dorset

Dorset Mondial defence pair jailed over arms deal bribe

Simon Davies and Robert Gillam Image copyright City of London Police
Image caption Simon Davies (l) and Robert Gillam admitted paying bribes to secure a £5m contract

Two former defence firm directors have been jailed for making bribes to win multi-million pound contracts.

Robert Gillam, 67, and Simon Davies, 46, admitted making payments of £72,000 and $75,000 to secure deals for Dorset-based Mondial Defence Systems.

Gillam, of Corfe Castle, was jailed for two years by the Old Bailey, while Davies, of Ringwood was given an 11-month sentence.

Both were disqualified from acting as company directors.

'Nominal amount'

City of London Police said the payments were made to Robert Gannon, operations manager for US firm RONCO Consulting Corporation, in 2009.

At the same time RONCO awarded Mondial a £5m contract to supply military items, including de-mining equipment for use in Afghanistan and Iraq.

On Christmas Eve in 2009, Gannon emailed Gillam saying: "Bob Great news - this seems to have done the trick - santa left his parcel. Much appreciated."

Gannon, a British national, was jailed for a year in the United States in 2015 for conspiracy to accept a kickback.

Police said Gillam, who founded Mondial in 1986, described the payments as an "appreciation of help" and "a nominal amount".

He said: "If you were working in the Middle East you'd be paying 25% on the contract, otherwise you wouldn't get the business. In the scope of things, it's nominal."

Det Sgt Joanne Ferguson said: "Mondial were a small company which used dishonest and corrupt practices to get ahead in business, stealing opportunity from honest competitors."

Mondial Defence Systems Limited, based at Holton Heath, has supplied explosives and bomb disposal equipment to armed forces around the world.

The firm, which declared net assets of £2m in 2014, has been approached for comment.

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