British arms trade & Saudi Arabia

Richard Norton-Taylor and Rob Evans report in The Guardian, ‘…The Yamamah deal became mired in a long-running controversy over allegations that BAE, Britain’s biggest arms dealer, made huge illicit payments to Saudi royals to land the contract. In 2006, Tony Blair’s government abruptly halted a Serious Fraud Office investigation into the allegations following pressure from the Saudis and the firm. In 2010, BAE agreed to pay almost £300m in penalties, to settle an investigation by US and UK authorities into alleged corruption in its deals with the Saudis and other countries…Saudi Arabia remains Britain’s biggest arms market. Last year it bought 72 Typhoon aircraft in a deal valued at more than £7bn. click here