Definition of backhander in English:



  • 1A blow made with the back of the hand.

    ‘shut up, or I'll give you a backhander’
    1. 1.1 A backhand stroke or shot in a game.
      ‘Hunter flipped in a backhander’
      • ‘He put a backhander past the goaltender with 2: 46 left in the second, giving his team a 2-1 lead.’
      • ‘There was no hesitation, as there has been with so many other shooters, before he fired a backhander behind the goalie.’
      • ‘Gathering the puck, he sent a backhander past the goalie, tying the game.’
      • ‘All of these tactics can work, just as a slap shot, a snap shot, a wrist shot or a backhander will work in the right situation.’
      • ‘Another Dutch star produced a stunner of a backhander for the golden goal.’
  • 2British informal A secret and illegal payment; a bribe.

    ‘a fortune had been paid in backhanders to local officials’
    • ‘Paying backhanders or providing fake employment information will be punished.’
    • ‘Detectives are investigating a senior figure at the Council following claims that the official received backhanders from companies which operated local council contracts.’
    • ‘This was an economy of licence fees, backhanders and extortion.’
    • ‘Judges are often bought off and the country's massive bureaucracy is riddled with layers of corruption involving endless backhanders.’
    • ‘Let there be no more blank cheques, backhanders or silent funding!’
    • ‘The ferry owner says some officials take backhanders to issue fitness certificates and licenses for vessels that are not shipshape.’
    • ‘If that doesn't get you noticed, you can always supplement your civil service pension with backhanders.’
    • ‘His friend Alfie - a cop suspended for accepting backhanders - has a moneymaking idea.’
    • ‘His payment for the information he provided was modest, as backhanders go: a small truck.’
    • ‘It is now worth more than 100 times that figure, partly due to rezoning which, it is alleged, was facilitated by backhanders to county councillors.’
    • ‘We know that the legal authorities have proven untrustworthy, and we have heard reports of backhanders by police and general corruption.’
    • ‘‘They give small allocations to the clubs involved,’ he said, ‘in favour of corporate hospitality and backhanders to sponsors,’ he said.’
    • ‘The problem is not just the bribes and the backhanders, it is the way political parties are financed through private donations.’
    • ‘There could be backhanders, bribed officials and matches fixed.’
    • ‘Energy deregulation resulted from lobbying by executives and backhanders paid to politicians.’
    • ‘I've had people ringing me up telling me that my career is over, and I've had people try and offer me huge backhander sums to slip them some information.’
    • ‘Petty corruption is rife in the country, from backhanders in hospitals to police rip-offs; foreign businessmen rank it as among Asia's most fraud-ridden economies.’
    • ‘I have received personal criticism in nasty sniping ways, even being accused publicly of taking a backhander.’
    • ‘Perhaps he takes backhanders and lives in Monaco at the weekend.’
    • ‘If you are going to give people backhanders to keep them on, the structure goes out of the window, and goodness knows where you end up.’
    payment, payout, reward, recompense, consideration
    View synonyms