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The biggest fines: £17 million fine imposed on Shell by FSA for ‘unprecedented misconduct’

The Guardian: Watchdogs with bite: the biggest fines

Tuesday April 8 2008

April 2008: Ofwat fines Severn Trent £35.8m for deliberately providing false information and offering customers a poor service.

December 2007: The Office of Fair Trading imposed a £116m fine on a number of supermarket groups and dairy companies, including Asda, Sainsbury and Dairy Crest. Sainsbury’s fine was £40m but that was reduced to £26m because of the company’s co-operation with investigators.

September 2007: Southern Water was hit with a £20.3m penalty for misreporting and poor service over several years. The Serious Fraud Office dropped an investigation into Southern Water in April after finding insufficient evidence to bring criminal charges.

September 2007: Thames Water was fined £12.5m for supplying inaccurate information and providing a poor service to customers. It claimed that the penalty would have a detrimental effect on its customers, as money that could have been spent improving service would instead go to the Treasury.

August 2007: BA fined £121.5m by the OFT for involvement in the fixing of long-haul fuel surcharges

July 2007: Cadbury Schweppes fined £1m over salmonella outbreak that gave 42 people food poisoning and put three of them in hospital.

April 2007: United Utilities was fined £8.5m by Ofwat for paying inflated prices to its sister companies. By increasing its costs in this manner, the company was able to argue that customer bills should be higher.

2005: Shell fined £17m by the Financial Services Authority after overstating its oil reserves by 25%. The episode was described by the regulator as “unprecedented misconduct”.

2003: Seven companies, including Manchester United, JJB Sports, Umbro and the Football Association, were fined more than £16m by the OFT for price fixing. © Guardian News and Media Limited 2008

Headline by John Donovan of and its also non-profit sister websites,,,,, and are all owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia article.

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