Mining firm Glencore’s British subsidiary has been given a penalty of £280.9m by the Southwark Crown Court in the UK over offences pertaining to oil operations in Africa.

The fine has been imposed on Glencore Energy UK Limited by Judge Peter Fraser, who also approved a confiscation order of £93.5m.

In June 2022, Glencore Energy pleaded guilty to paying $28m in bribes, via its employees and agents, to secure preferential access to oil in Cameroon, the Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Nigeria, and South Sudan.

According to the judge, the offences for which Glencore pleaded guilty represented ‘corporate corruption on a widespread scale, deploying very substantial sums of money in bribes’.

Fraser added: “The corruption is of extended duration, and took place across five separate countries in West Africa, but had its origins in the West Africa oil trading desk of the defendant in London. It was endemic amongst traders on that particular desk.”

Glencore said it is undertaking an extensive corporate reform programme.

Glencore chairman Kalidas Madhavpeddi said: “The conduct that took place was inexcusable and has no place in Glencore.”

In sentencing remarks, Fraser said: “Glencore has engaged in corporate reform and today appears to be a very different corporation than it was at the time of these offences.”

In May 2022, Glencore agreed to pay penalties of up to $1.5bn to settle probes into bribery and market manipulation allegations in the US, Brazil, and the UK.