Recent Cases

The King v Jacobs Group (Australia) Pty Ltd [2023] HCA 23 (02 August 2023) (Kiefel CJ; Gageler, Gordon, Edelman, Steward, Gleeson and Jagot JJ)


Statutes – Construction – Where respondent pleaded guilty to offences of conspiracy to cause offer of provision of bribe to foreign public official contrary to ss 11.5 and 70.2(1) of Criminal Code (Cth) – Where s 70.2(5) of Criminal Code (Cth) relevantly prescribed maximum monetary penalty for offence as not more than greatest of: (a) 100,000 penalty units; or (b) if court can determine value of benefit that body corporate obtained that is reasonably attributable to conduct constituting offence, three times value of that benefit – Where parties agreed “benefit” obtained was securing contracts for carrying out construction projects – Where parties also agreed “benefit” obtained was money received for performing contracts – Whether s 70.2(5)(b) required value of benefit obtained by respondent to be determined as sum of amounts respondent in fact received under contracts secured by bribery – Whether deduction could properly be made for any costs incurred in performing contracts.

Words and phrases – “any advantage”, “benefit”, “bribery”, “effective, proportionate, and dissuasive”, “fine”, “foreign public official”, “gross amount”, “international obligations”, “maximum penalty”, “monetary penalty”, “net benefit”, “obtained directly or indirectly”, “OECD Convention”, “reasonably attributable”, “sentence”, “value of the benefit”.