The UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is probing some of the London insurance firms for bribery and corruption, reported Bloomberg citing people familiar with the matter.

The firms being probed include Jardine Jardine Lloyd Thompson (JLT), which is owned by Marsh & McLennan Companies, and Tysers Insurance Brokers.

SFO is investigating the ways these insurance firms secured South American business.

In 2021 financial results, Marsh said the US Department of Justice (DOJ) sought $29m in disgorgement in ‘alleged gross profits’ and didn’t pursue any charges against it.

By agreeing this resolution in principle, JLT recorded a charge in the fourth quarter 2021 for disgorgement amount.

Although the probe has been underway since years, official statement has not yet been given by the SFO, reported the publication.

One of the people said that the investigation, however, extends into fewer than five companies.

The enquiry is linked to a probe by the US DOJ into corruption at Seguros Sucre, Ecuador’s state-run insurance fund.

Seguros is currently in the process of being liquidated.

Earlier, Seguros Sucre former chairman and an ex-employee at JLT pleaded guilty in the US owing to money laundering charges.

According to a US court filing, Ecuadorian government officials received millions of dollars between 2013 and 2017 for allowing brokers to obtain and retain business from Seguros Sucre.

Lloyd’s was cited by the publication as saying: “This is not a Lloyd’s investigation and, in any event, Lloyd’s does not regulate brokers.

“However, to the extent that anything comes to light as a result of the investigation that is directly connected to Lloyd’s then Lloyd’s will, of course, consider that information carefully.”