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Wanted: Shell Senior Legal Counsel to evade Anti Bribery and Corruption laws?

Screen Shot 2014-10-30 at 09.22.43Unfortunately it is unclear if the lucky applicant is expected to advise Shell employees on how to avoid falling foul of bribery and corruption laws, or how to get round them. I suppose its a fine distinction.

By John Donovan

Just spotted an advert for the job of Senior Legal Counsel for Anti Bribery and Corruption at Royal Dutch Shell Group.

Apparently part of the job function is to provide specialist advice in connection with the Shell Anti-Corruption Manual, which probably has the same standing within the company as the outdated Shell Business Principles – just a theatrical prop designed to conjure up an illusion of honesty. 

Unfortunately it is unclear if the lucky applicant is expected to advise Shell employees on how to avoid falling foul of bribery and corruption laws, or how to get round them.

I suppose its a fine distinction. 

Looks like the advert has been on display for some time, which could perhaps explain why Shell seems forever mired in corruption scandals e.g. Nigeria and Ireland. 

I note the requirement that the applicant must be able to practice law in Texas. Wonder if that has anything to do with the Robert Writt case?  He is the courageous former Shell employee suing Shell for defamation in relation to a corruption case in which Shell is a key player. Shell tried to make him the fall guy for what occurred. 


Senior Legal Counsel – Anti Bribery and Corruption

Job description

The Shell Group is at the heart of the global energy and petrochemicals business and employs more than 90,000 people with operations in over 90 countries. A vacancy has arisen for experienced Anti-Bribery and Corruption Senior lawyer to join our ABC specialist team in London. The Anti-Bribery and Corruption lawyers (Subject Matter Experts) are part of the Shell Ethics and Compliance Office, itself part of the Shell Legal organisation, which also deals (inter alia) with Anti- Trust, Trade Controls and Data Privacy. They work closely with the Business and Functional Compliance Officers and their teams and provide specialist advice in connection with the Shell Anti-Corruption Manual and its procedures as well as the application of the principal international anti-corruption legislation, such as the FCPA and the UKBA.

In addition, they support other Shell lawyers in the negotiation of contracts with regard to ABC clauses and in M&A transactions, frequently dealing with their counterparts in competitor companies and contractors and suppliers, provide training to Shell staff in at-risk roles and monitor external developments in relation to new legislation and enforcement to ensure that the Shell procedures remain up to date and compliant.

Working with the other ABC lawyers in London, Nigeria, Hong Kong and elsewhere, you will be responsible for providing specialist ABC advice and support to Group companies on a wide range of issues, primarily ABC compliance advice in respect of the Anti-bribery and Corruption Manual and its procedures,due diligence questions and ABC investigations. You will be advising independently on a wide range of ABC law issues and will be expected to have experience in this area.

Knowledge and experience of the principal international ABC laws would be a distinct advantage. Sound legal experience and a calm,confident and practical, solutions-oriented approach. Strong presentation skills and a good team player with the ability to interact effectively with clients at all levels in the Shell organisation and other lawyers,both in-house and in private practice. Ability to work without daily supervision is essential. Language skills would be a definite advantage.

The successful candidates must be a hard teamworker, have the ability to multitask, possess the discipline to prioritise projects and conflicting demands,be able to delegate, respect confidentiality requirements,have the ability to firmly communicate with tact and diplomacy at multiple levels. Problem-solving and decision-making skills are a necessity as is an extensive knowledge of Shell policies and practices
Desired Skills and Experience
1. Excellent legal drafting skills.
2. Strong negotiation and counseling skills.
3. Experience with business transactions, including M&A.
4. Ability to work independently without the assistance of outside counsel.
5. Ability to meet deadlines and demonstrate flexibility.
6. Excellent analytical and organizational skills.
7. The candidate must be able and willing to see both the big picture and to handle details accurately and consistently.
8. Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing, including with senior level executives and overseas colleagues.
9. Ability to maintain confidentiality of sensitive information.
10. The candidate must be licensed to practice law in Texas, or able to obtain license in a reasonable timeframe. and its sister non-profit websites,,,,,, and are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia feature.

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