Transparency International Sri Lanka (TISL) wrote to the Director of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) in the UK on 6 March 2020, posing a series of queries pertaining to Sri Lanka’s entitlement to compensation in the €3.6bn settlement reached with Airbus SE. This letter forms part of TISL’s ongoing work to aid in the recovery of the $116m loss incurred by Sri Lankan Airlines as a result of the corrupt re-fleeting deal with Airbus SE. TISL had previously written a joint letter to the SFO, the Parquet National Financier in France and the US Department of Justice in June 2018, flagging allegations of corruption in Airbus SE’s conduct and highlighting the need to ensure compensation for those harmed by any wrongdoing.
In the letter to the SFO Director last week, TISL highlights the UK’s “General Principles to compensate overseas victims (including affected States) in bribery, corruption and economic crime cases”. TISL believes that Sri Lanka has a legitimate demand to compensation in this instance.