Shares in Weir Group were up on the FTSE 100 despite the engineering company saying it had pleaded guilty to two charges of breaching UN sanctions in relation to the Oil for Food programme.

The breaches occurred on contracts, which had been sanctioned by the UN, that were awarded between 2000 and 2002.

The company said it would be formally charged today and that the case will be heard tomorrow at the High Court in Edinburgh.

By pleading guilty Weir may be required to hand over any of the benefits gained from the offences as well as a fine. While the High Court has yet to approve it, Weir has agreed on an amount of £13,945,962 in compensation.

Lord Smith, Chairman of Weir, said, "What happened was wrong. As I said in 2004, I am bitterly disappointed that this went on within the Weir Group. Since 2004, when we first disclosed the issue, we have radically overhauled procedures. A strong ethics culture is in place across the Group and it is the reference point for everything we do."

By 11:15 shares in Weir Group were up 1.02 per cent on the FTSE 100 to 1,782.00.