BAE prepared for fine

DEFENCE giant BAE Systems is prepared to pay a record breaking fine over bribery allegations, sources close to the situation said yesterday, if &ldquo;compelling evidence&rdquo; indicates the charges against it are true.<br /><br />The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) said last week it wanted to prosecute Europe&rsquo;s biggest defence contractor over allegations the firm used bribery and corruption in arms deals in South Africa, Tanzania, Romania and the Czech Republic.The charges date back to the 1990s.<br /><br />BAE is understood to have snubbed a deal that would have seen it pay a &pound;300m fine to settle the case and now wants to review the evidence against it before agreeing to a new deal.&nbsp; <br /><br />BAE refused to make fresh comments on the allegations yesterday, but reiterated that it was &ldquo;seeking to resolve the issues at the earliest opportunity.&rdquo;<br /><br />Last week, legal experts said BAE could face penalties of hundreds of millions of pounds if found guilty,