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SHELL ALCOHOL FOR THE GARDA: CHRISTMAS GIFT OR BRIBE?

Screen Shot 2013-08-20 at 23.18.11COMMENT BY A KNOWLEDGEABLE SOURCE ON SHELL SPONSORED ALCOHOL FOR THE GARDA: CHRISTMAS GIFT OR BRIBE?

John

Shell have a rule that gifts are acceptable up to a certain value.  I don’t know the current figure, but 100 Euros would probably be about right.

300 garda times 100 Euros = 30,000 Euros, so if OSSL only spent 29,500 Euros that would mean that they were 1 Euro below the limit at which the gift would have been a bribe and hence unacceptable. So Shell can probably hold their hands on their hearts and say that they did not (according to their own definition) bribe the garda. Hence rejection rather than denial.

However, I believe that there is another stipulation which is that the gift must be consumed at a single sitting. I have no doubt that it is possible to consume 100 Euros worth of good wine or spirits at a single sitting, and I don’t know the price of alcohol in Ireland, but it seems that the garda involved would have needed to be very thirsty!

The real crime here is that OSSL were apparently asked to do something, and Shell then refused to pay for the service that they had requested. Whether or not the alcohol was a bribe to the garda or was simply a Christmas gift is open to debate, but the ethics of treating a small supplier in the manner that Shell seem to have done seems unbelievably high handed and stupid.

Answer to one question:

Here’s a website which gives a partial answer:

http://www.obrienswine.ie/spirits/spirits/irish-whiskey.html?p=1

100 Euros would seem to be about right for a 6-bottle case of wine or spirits, as described by the newspaper editor who returned his “gift”. But it’s hard to imagine how this could have been consumed at a single sitting;

300 6-bottle cases would also correspond to about 3 tons and even with two trips would have exceeded the permitted load of a transit van!

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