Criminal investigations are increasingly taking on an international dimension and individuals can often find themselves being pursued by regulators and enforcement agencies from other jurisdictions.
To combat the rise in international crimes including bribery and corruption, cartels and money laundering there has been greater cooperation between law enforcement agencies through Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) and simplified extradition procedures.
UK regulators such as the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) have the powers to obtain evidence through MLA arrangements – the SFO has its own dedicated MLA unit. Cooperation between international agencies can also extend to the freezing or restraint of assets both in the UK and abroad.
Some criminal offences such as corruption can be prosecuted in a country that has little or no connection to the place where the offences are alleged to have taken place. The US has an infamously wide extra-territorial jurisdiction in this area.
How we can help
Attempts may be made to compel individuals to appear and testify in a foreign court or extradition may be sought. The way in which you respond to requests from international enforcement agencies can have profound consequences, therefore it is essential you seek expert advice in this extremely complex area of law.
If you are facing extradition, criminal investigation for an alleged offence overseas or a request for mutual legal assistance, our extradition and international crime lawyers advise clients seeking extradition from the UK to the US, Europe and worldwide.
We have extensive knowledge of international regulators and enforcement agencies and relationships with a network of international lawyers. We also help clients who are the subject of an INTERPOL Red Notice, challenging the motivation of such notices and successfully getting them removed.
- Advised three senior personnel in the SFO investigation into corruption at Rolls Royce. This was a worldwide investigation and added complexity resulted from convictions in the US of former employees and a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA) being reached with the group. No proceedings were brought against our clients
- Advised a director in relation to the worldwide SFO investigation into the alleged corrupt activities at Una Oil, a Monaco-based advisory company involved in the oil and gas sector. The investigation has recently concluded with no further action taken against our client. Other individuals in connection with the wider allegations have been charged and convicted
- Acted for a company director which was a niche provider of temporary construction units used in the Middle East for workers in the oil fields. The SFO investigated alleged corruption involving companies in the Middle East and Far East through third party agents, no charges were brought against our client
- Advising a UK based, former senior executive of a multi-national listed entity in a criminal investigation by the Indian governments’ Enforcement Directorate. The case is being investigated in India and has attracted significant media interest. Summons compelling attendance in India have been issued together with extradition threats
- Advising a senior individual of Tata Steel Europe in a case of alleged fraud by misrepresentation on a massive scale. The allegations relate to the supply of steel to various manufacturers in all jurisdictions by Tata Steel of Europe.
- Advising a director in a European wide tax investigation into fraud and money laundering. Complex jurisdictional issues. A joint investigation team was formed by UK and Dutch investigators. Following representations, no criminal charges were brought against our client in the UK. Criminal proceedings in Holland are continuing
- Advising the directors of large imports and logistics companies in respect of worldwide investigations into the alleged £50m evasion of ‘anti-dumping duties’ imposed by the EU on Chinese manufactured Solar panels. This is the first ‘anti-dumping’ criminal investigation conducted by HMRC. Prosecutions have been brought by German tax authorities
- Advising an ex-director of a multi-jurisdictional PLC at the inception of an HMRC enquiry. More than 200 officers were deployed to raid various premises throughout the country. HMRC’s investigations are worldwide and focus on what is an alleged a multi-million-pound VAT missing trader fraud (MITC)