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Vehicle inspection bribes

Published: November 8, 2023

The Örebro District Court has convicted a technician involved in vehicle inspections for bribery. (Länk) The man is said to have accepted bribes to approve cars.

The case follows a pattern where bribes often occur at the intersection of the private and public sectors. Vehicle inspections can be considered a delegated exercise of authority since it is an activity sanctioned by the public and funded with public resources. The problem is often linked to sparsely compensated officials representing significant values in their duties and, therefore, having incentives to capitalize on these values. It is somewhat less clear whether the official's compensation level has any substantial statistical significance when it comes to bribes. It is conceivable that control over values in the form of permits, licenses, or the like, exerts sufficient allure regardless of the official's current income level.

Lantero frequently receives questions about what falls within the scope of whistleblower laws (The Whistleblower Act), and in such a case, it is certainly possible to interpret it as a whistleblowing case. Publicly sanctioned activities that control or regulate traffic safety are considered a matter of public interest, and bribery that risks undermining traffic safety or the legitimacy of regulatory authorities (and operations with delegated exercise of authority) must be regarded as serious.

In the current case, however, it is unclear whether it has been brought to light through whistleblowing reporting and has bearing upon the Whistleblower Act.