Sir Richard Evans

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Sir Richard Evans, commonly known as Dick Evans, is the former chairman of British defence giant BAE Systems. Evans has spent his entire career in the defence industry, beginning in the 1960s with government department posts in the then nationalised British defence sector.

Evans was appointed chief executive of British Aerospace, a previous incarnation of BAE, in 1990 and rose to become chairman in May 1998. He was awarded a CBE in 1986 for 'services to export' and knighted in the 1996 Queen's Birthday Honours.

Evans led the way in opening up access for the UK defence sector to the New Labour government. He chaired the 'Aerospace Innovation and Growth Team' at the Department of Trade and Industry and the 'National Defence Industries Council' in the Ministry of Defence. The Observer newspaper has quoted an 'industry insider' as saying that Evans had unrivalled access to the British Prime Minister:

"Dick is entirely ruthless. He is a hard man and gets his own way. But he has also been the most successful in shifting the political ground and courting New Labour. He's one of the few businessmen who can see [Tony] Blair on request." [1]

Evans was embroiled in a running scandal relating to an alleged £60m slush fund kept by BAE to bribe officials in Saudi Arabia. His name is referred to in records of a number of phone calls, emails and meetings.[2] The slush fund allegations are under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office.

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