British Queen celebrates


Jeffrey Cook, former managing director of an Airbus subsidiary, has been sentenced to two and a half years in prison by a London court for his involvement in accepting kickbacks during

his tenure at Britain's Ministry of Defence (MoD) nearly two decades ago.

Cook, aged 67, was convicted of misconduct in public office in January following an extensive criminal investigation into allegations of bribes paid to high-ranking officials in Saudi Arabia.

While Cook was charged with overseeing corrupt payments to middlemen to secure lucrative deals with the Saudi Arabian National Guard, he and John Mason, described as the accountant and part-owner of the middlemen's business, were acquitted of corruption charges in January after a trial at Southwark Crown Court.

The allegations against Cook and Mason included paying bribes to top Saudi officials, including Prince Miteb bin Abdullah, son of the late King Abdullah, between 2007 and 2012.

The focus of the case centered around GPT Special Project Management, a defunct subsidiary of Airbus responsible for providing communications systems to the Saudi Arabian National Guard under a contract with the MoD.

Prosecutors argued that Cook and Mason were deeply involved in corruption, with bribes totaling over 9.7 million pounds ($12.1 million) paid to Saudi officials and intermediaries between 2007 and 2010.

However, Cook and Mason maintained that the British government approved millions of pounds in payments, citing national financial and strategic interests.

During sentencing, Judge Simon Picken deemed Cook's offense as serious, warranting immediate imprisonment. Cook was found guilty of one count of misconduct in public office related to payments received during his tenure at the MoD prior to joining GPT. Photo by Jorge Franganillo, Wikimedia commons.