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Report No. 258

H. Switzerland40

40 The information on Switzerland has been taken from the 'Country Review Report of Switzerland, Review by Algeria and Finland for the review cycle 2010-2015, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime; see also Executive summary on Switzerland, Note by the Secretariat, Reconvened Third Session of the Implementation Review Group, Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption, UN Doc. No. CAC/COSP/IRG/I/2/1/Add.2 (2012).

3.9.1 Switzerland signed the UNCAC in 2003 and ratified it in 2009. An Inter-departmental (inter-ministerial) Working Group against Corruption has been established in the country to prevent corruption, although the Group has no powers to engage in administrative enquiries or criminal investigations. The Attorney-General's Office is responsible for criminal investigations and prosecutions against the federal government.

Issues surrounding mutual legal assistance are also addressed by the Attorney-General's Office. The Money-laundering Reporting Office plays a significant role in (1) collecting and analysing suspicious facts reported by financial intermediaries, and (2) in instances where the facts are well-founded, forwarding the necessary information to the criminal prosecution authorities of the Confederation.

3.9.2 In the context of the offences under Articles 15 and 16 of the UNCAC respectively, article 322 of the Swiss Criminal Code covers all the offences of active and passive bribery of national officials, foreign public officials and officials of public international organisations within its scope. The bribery provision also penalises the incitement of a national public official to perform an action that is not contrary to his or her duties. While indirect bribery is not specifically criminalised, the interpretation and application of the national anti-corruption laws allows for the prosecution of bribery committed through intermediaries.

3.9.3 Swiss courts have established their jurisdiction in accordance with Article 42 of the UNCAC and recognise the principles of active and passive personality for the exercise of such jurisdiction. Under article 7(1) of the Swiss Criminal Code, felonies and misdemeanors committed outside Swiss territory by or against a person of Swiss nationality also come under Swiss criminal jurisdiction insofar as dual criminality is satisfied. Swiss courts also exercise jurisdiction in cases referred to in sub-paragraph (b) and sub-paragraph (d) of Article 42(2) of the UNCAC.

Under exceptional circumstances, criminal jurisdiction can also be established in relation to crimes committed abroad where the alleged offender and the victim are both foreign nationals. These circumstances may relate to crimes that are condemned by the international community or cases where due to the application of the principle of non-refoulement, the extradition request cannot be operationalised.

Prevention of Bribery of Foreign Public Officials and Officials of Public International Organisations - A Study and Proposed Amendments Back

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