U.K. Prosecutors Said to Seek More Funds for ENRC Bribery Probeby
The U.K. Serious Fraud Office sought additional funding for its probe into Eurasian Natural Resources Corp. in a sign that prosecutors are continuing to expand the investigation.
The SFO is seeking so-called blockbuster funding for its probe, according to a person with knowledge of the situation who asked not to be identified because the request is private. While the amount hasn’t been disclosed, the prosecutor is able to seek additional funding for cases that may exceed 10 percent of its 33 million-pound ($44 million) budget.
The SFO opened a formal investigation in 2013 into allegations ENRC paid bribes to win business in Kazakhstan and Africa. The probe is focused on the acquisition of certain mineral assets. The company changed its name to Eurasian Resources Group when it delisted in 2013.
The prosecutor carried out another round of interviews earlier this year with potential suspects in the investigation, according to the person. The SFO sought an additional 21 million pounds in funding for large-scale corruption investigations in January.
The Financial Times first reported the news of the extra funding.
Simon Varcoe, a spokesman for the SFO, declined to comment. Calls and e-mails to ERG weren’t immediately returned.