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SFO, BAE Help Educate Millions Of Kids

The U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office said today that BAE Systems will pay nearly £30 million to fund educational projects in Tanzania.

The payment is part of BAE’s 2010 global settlement of bribery charges.

In that settlement, BAE paid the U.S. DOJ a $400 million criminal fine. In the U.K., the fine was just £500,000. But BAE also agreed with the SFO to fund social projects in Tanzania.

BAE admitted that it failed to keep adequate accounting records for a contract to supply an air traffic control system to Tanzania’s government.

The £30 million will be used to buy textbooks for all 16,000 primary schools in the country, the SFO said, benefiting more than eight million children. Teaching guides and syllabi will be provided to 175,000 primary school teachers.

Up to £5 million will be spent to buy desks for schools in Tanzania’s poorest districts.

The SFO said the U.K. has been helping BAE and the government of Tanzania allocate the money and decide how it will be delivered and monitored.

SFO director Richard Alderman said: ‘This agreement is a first for the SFO which piloted it through the U.K. legal system. It provides a satisfactory outcome for all concerned but most of all for the Tanzanian people and I am personally delighted that SFO staff were able to achieve this.’

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View the SFO’s March 15, 2012 release here.

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