Mabey and Johnson has been fined UK£ 3,5 million (€ 3,8 million) for corruption and breaching UN sanctions. The fine follows the company's guilty plea at Westminster Magistrates Court in July on charges of paying bribes in Jamaica, Ghana and Iraq. The successful prosecution was the first of its kind against a UK company operating overseas.

The company has also been ordered to pay a UK£ 1,1 million (€ 1,2 million) confiscation order, UK£ 350000 (€ 381000) in prosecution costs and UK£ 1,4 million (€ 1,5 million) in compensation to Ghana, Jamaica and Iraq.

A company statement said as a result of Southwark Crown Court's order, the costs to Mabey and Johnson would total UK£ 6,6 million (€ 7,2 million).

Mabey and Johnson's new managing director, Peter Lloyd said, "What our company did in the past is a matter of deep regret.

"We have now made a fresh start, having wiped the slate clean of these offences. Part of that means the payment of today's court fines. We have also said we will pay appropriate compensation as a further expression of our regret," he said.

Since the spring of 2008, five of Mabey and Johnson's directors have stepped down. A new management team has been appointed and extensive training has taken place throughout the organisation. A Serious Fraud Office (SFO) approved independent monitor has also been appointed to report on the company's ethical compliance to both the Mabey and Johnson board and the SFO.

Mr Lloyd said, "Business ethics are now at the heart of our business and new whistle-blowing procedures have been introduced. We have made a fresh start as a company."

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