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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In the United Kingdon, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for eight years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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United Kingdom > London > Crime, fraud and licensing > Fraud: civil > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings



Index of tables

  1. Fraud: civil
  2. Hall of Fame
  3. Leading individuals
  4. Next generation lawyers

Next generation lawyers

  1. 1

Who Represents Who

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The β€˜strong team’ at Allen & Overy LLP β€˜attracts significant instructions from large corporate clients as well as individuals’, and is best known for handling complex multijurisdictional cases involving freezing and disclosure orders, along with search and seizure orders. Highlights included representing a major international hedge fund in relation to the theft of confidential information and trading strategies by a former employee, and acting for Kazakhstan Kagazy in a multimillion-dollar fraud case. Practice head Mona Vaswani is β€˜an impressive, no-nonsense solicitor with good judgement and a commercial attitude’ who β€˜invariably remains calm and collected, even in the face of unusual and challenging circumstances’. Senior associate Helen Biggin is noted for her expertise in emerging markets, and regularly handles matters across Iraq and Kazakhstan.

The β€˜top-tier’ practice at Baker McKenzie utilises its global network to handle cross-border fraud investigations involving conspiracy claims, economic torts and fraudulent misrepresentation, and the team also advises on international asset tracing and disclosure orders. Practice head Charles Thomson specialises in banking and finance sector matters; Hugh Lyons represents a mix of banks, corporates and financial institutions in high-profile disputes; and Jonathan Peddie focuses on bribery, corruption and money laundering cases. Highlights for the firm included acting for Dubai Islamic Bank in proceedings to recover $500m stolen in a complex receivables financing fraud, and representing Bidcorp Foodservice as claimant following misappropriation of company assets by its former managing director. The team also acts as global legal coordinator for Grupo Torras in relation to the recovery of stolen assets.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP continues to handle a vast array of multijurisdictional fraud cases involving freezing and search orders, asset tracing and cross-border proceedings. Highlights have included acting for two KPMG receivers in a fraud case against JSC BTA Bank, where a banker was accused of perpetrating a multibillion-pound fraud, and advising three partners of Alvarez & Marsal Europe in a follow-up matter to the JSC BTA Bank v. Ablyazov litigation. Practice head James Kennedy has handled matters across the UK, France, Russia and the Middle East, and other key figures include Matthew Bruce and Philip Croall, who has notable expertise in the Cyprus legal market.

Hogan Lovells International LLP is β€˜an absolutely top-drawer firm when it comes to civil fraud’, and β€˜has conducted some of the best known fraud litigations of the last decade’. The firm has significant expertise in cases involving Russia and the CIS, advising both individuals and private corporates in the aerospace and defence, financial services and healthcare sectors, amongst others. Highlights included representing the Deposit Insurance Agency (DIA) in a series of high-profile judgements against former businessman and senator Sergei Pugachev, and representing FM Capital Partners in a High Court claim against its former CEO in relation to the mismanagement of an investment portfolio. The team is headed by the β€˜hugely experienced’ Crispin Rapinet, who β€˜can always be relied upon to make the right strategic call and never fails to command the respect and attention of the client’. Other key figures include Michael Roberts, who β€˜has a rare combination of superb client skills, impeccable strategic judgement and meticulous attention to detail’, and Chris Hardman, who focuses on offshore matters.

Jones Day provides β€˜high levels of technical expertise, supported by commercial and practical approaches to all cases’. Acting primarily on the claimant side, the team specialises in cross-border civil fraud matters with an offshore element. Highlights included representing the foreign representative of KPMG Eastern Caribbean in proceedings before the English Courts, a case where secured claims were valued at circa Β£10m; acting for CT Service Procurement in a Β£65m claim against Carbon Capital following the collapse of a tax-efficient carbon credits trading scheme; and advising a Chapter II Trustee of the Soundview Funds following its collapse. The β€˜technically excellent’ Sion Richards heads the practice, and the β€˜enormously experienced’ Craig Shuttleworth is the other key practitioner.

Linklaters LLP has β€˜the strength and depth of talent to be able to undertake incredibly complex, wide-scale multijurisdictional investigations, and to advise companies on all aspects of their obligations and liabilities’. The firm’s cross-border capabilities encompass Europe, Africa and the Middle East, and the team regularly works with its insolvency, derivatives and financial regulatory departments, amongst others. Recent work included representing a major accountancy firm in a professional negligence claim in relation to a collapsed property investment fund in the Isle of Man, and acting for Grant Thornton as liquidator in on ongoing $9.2bn fraud trial in the Cayman Islands. Practice head Michael Bennett’s β€˜years of experience have imbued him with a sense of calm control, which is deeply reassuring to clients’; Satindar Dogra is praised for his β€˜absolute dedication to each case’; and Christa Band is β€˜incredibly astute and sure-footed in her approach’.

Mishcon de Reya LLP is β€˜a standout firm in the category of civil fraud’ and is noted for its strength in asset recovery cases, most notably those involving pre-emptive civil injunctions and freezing orders. The team recently acted for an individual accused of civil bribery and corruption, a case brought by the Libyan Investigation Authority (LIA), and also represented four New Zealand Trustees in a well-publicised High Court litigation brought by a Russian bank and the DIA against the bank’s co-founder, Sergei Pugachev. Key partners include practice head Kasra Nouroozi, fraud specialist Kathryn Garbett and Gary Miller, whose β€˜tactical judgement, hewn over decades, is almost without parallel’.

PCB Litigation LLP is β€˜a niche firm which has built up an outstanding reputation in the civil fraud field’, β€˜punching well above its weight’ and providing β€˜pragmatic, current and appropriate advice on all fronts’. The team handles asset tracing matters on behalf of banks, large corporations and high-net-worth individuals, and has a strong track record in all types of property fraud and employee fraud, bribery, manipulation and conspiracy to injure. Recent work includes acting for TPG Capital in a claim brought by the liquidators of Hellas II, a Greek telecoms company, in relation to fraudulent trading. Key practitioner Anthony Riem is β€˜a shrewd tactician and a great fighter’, and Trevor Mascarenhas is praised for his β€˜encyclopaedic knowledge of the laws of multiple jurisdictions’.

Peters & Peters Solicitors LLP is β€˜arguably London’s best civil fraud litigation boutique’, and is β€˜particularly sought after for its wealth of experience and its additional support in criminal and regulatory litigation’. The team has been instructed on a number of substantial cases involving freezing and disclosure orders, and acts primarily for claimants who has been victims of major fraud. Keith Oliver heads the commercial litigation, civil fraud and asset recovery team and β€˜brings many years of practical and commercial litigation experience to every dispute’; Jonathan Tickner is β€˜a fabulous solicitor who quickly gains the clients’ trust’; and Sarah Gabriel is β€˜an accomplished and serious lawyer who gets into the details of her cases to excellent effect’.

Simmons & Simmons has β€˜a strong and diverse practice with a particular emphasis on the financial services sector’, and regularly handles disputes encompassing various jurisdictions including Eastern Europe, Russia and Japan. Notable work included representing a Russian businessman in a banking and fraud claim, a case arising from a $150m loan from the Bank of Moscow to JFC, a Russian fruit distribution company, where the latter failed to repay the loan. The team also acted for Walter Saunders, a conveyancer who acted for an individual fraudulently posing as the true owner of a Β£1.4m property. Key practitioners include Nick Benwell, who has a strong track record of dealing with large-scale investigations, and Tim Boyce, who advises financial institutions on fraud claims and major disputes.

Stephenson Harwood’s β€˜extremely professional team’ of "star individuals" provides β€˜timely, practical and cost-effective advice which is specifically tailored for the client’. The team is particularly strong in cases involving Russia, the CIS, Africa and India, and continues to pick up significant instructions from individuals and major companies regarding major fraud litigation. Recent work includes representing the former shareholders of Yukos Oil Company in the enforcement of a $54bn arbitration award against the Russian Federation, and acting for the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) in allegations that defrauded the company of millions of dollars. Alan Bercow jointly heads the practice with Ros Prince, who is β€˜one of the best fraud partners in the City’. Senior associate Priya Grewal has β€˜an excellent grasp of complex legal issues’. Experienced litigator John Fordham is also recommended.

Addleshaw Goddard has β€˜a strong track record in big-ticket fraud work’, and continues to handle significant bet-the-company cases on behalf of clients including British Petroleum, Popli Khalatbari Charitable Foundation and Bank Alkhair. The team recently acted for the latter in a Commercial Court claim seeking the enforcement of two judgements of the Bahrain Chamber of Dispute Resolution, a claim totalling Β£2.5m. In another highlight, the firm defended the Leipzig Water Authority against claims brought by UBS in relation to credit derivatives and bribery. The team is headed by Michael Barnett, and other key figures include Jon Tweedale, β€˜seasoned fraud litigator’ Mark Chesher and Louisa Caswell, who β€˜has great commitment and judgement’.

Berwin Leighton Paisner LLP continues to attract complex fraud, corruption and dishonesty mandates from high-profile companies and individuals, and is noted for its strength in cases involving embezzlement of state funds, breach of management, recovery of fraud proceeds and security enforcement. In a recent highlight, the team successfully acted for the Central Bank of Nigeria in a Supreme Court case regarding the misappropriation of trust assets, a significant matter valued at Β£900m. The group also continues to act for Access Bank in a claim against its former CEO and managing director, and is currently advising Thames Water on various fraud-related issues. Segun Osuntokun heads the department, and Graham Shear is the other key practitioner.

Bird & Bird LLP is known for its arbitration expertise in relation to civil fraud matters, and has a strong track record across various sectors including aviation, oil and gas, financial services and construction. The team recently represented Property Alliance Group in a Β£32m claim against a bank which had allegedly mis-sold four interest rate swaps and breached a customer agreement. It also defended Banca Nazional Del Lavoro (BNL) in the Court of Appeal against a claim brought by the Playboy Club casino, who alleged negligence with regards to a banker’s reference for the solvency of a customer. Practice head Sophie Eyre has significant experience in domestic and international arbitration, and Ludovic de Walden specialises in art-related cases, acting for a mix of galleries, museums and dealers.

Byrne and Partners LLP’ β€˜robust litigation practice’ is β€˜preeminent amongst firms specialising in civil fraud defence’, and the team has β€˜an excellent international client base and contact list, which gives them a real depth of knowledge and expertise of the area’. The department is headed by Nicola Boulton, who is described by clients as β€˜an natural leader with unsurpassed knowledge of her field, with excellent judgement and an unerring ability to pick the right strategy’. Yvonne Jefferies is also a key figure, and is β€˜a highly impressive communicator who achieves outstanding results in highly difficult circumstances’. Work highlights included representing a high-profile businessman in various civil and criminal proceedings brought in multiple jurisdictions, successfully obtaining a dismissal of all actions brought against the client.

Charles Russell Speechlys LLP utilises its β€˜strong international coverage’ and has β€˜a great depth and breadth of experience in dealing with fraud work, particularly with high-value offshore fraud litigation’. Recent work included representing the joint official liquidators of Awal Bank subsidiaries in claims alleging fraud, unjust enrichment and dishonest assistance, a high-profile case centred in the Cayman Islands. Practice head Stewart Hey is β€˜an exemplary fraud lawyer- extremely hard working, easy to deal with and with an excellent strategic mind for any case’; James Hyne specialises in restructuring and insolvency law; and legal director Charlotte Pender is β€˜reliable, and grasps complex issues very quickly’.

Clifford Chance LLP is β€˜an extremely strong player which is perfectly equipped to deal with the toughest fraud cases on both sides of the fence’, and the firm β€˜continues to act on a wide range disputes for an equally wide range of clients’. Roger Best heads the department which recently acted for Citi in proceedings brought by Terra Firma, who alleged that the client induced the company to purchase London-based music group EMI at an inflated price. Other key figures include Jeremy Kosky, who acts for major corporates in fraud cases, and β€˜outstanding tactician’ Matthew Scully, who is β€˜extremely bright and has a real depth of experience in bribery litigation’.

Clyde & Co LLP’s β€˜highly responsive’ team provides β€˜sound commercial advice and a clear, hands-on approach to the client’s issues’. The firm has a notable focus on developing economies and emerging markets, and has handled matters spanning Russian and the CIS along with India, China, South America and the Middle East. Recent work includes representing Zurich Insurance in a claim against several individuals involved in an employee-led fraud ring, where workers were deliberately staging accidents with outside parties for financial gain. Chris Burdett co-heads the department with Conrad Walker, who has β€˜an amazing ability to quickly understand the needs of the client and the complexity of the case’.

DLA Piper has β€˜a strong civil fraud practice both in litigation and arbitration’ and provides β€˜pragmatic advice with good risk analysis’. Key individuals include β€˜tough opponent’ Jean-Pierre Douglas-Henry, β€˜polished and innovative thinker’ Jeremy Andrews and Jamie Curle, who β€˜moves easily between the details and the big picture’ and β€˜has an excellent strategic grasp of all issues’. The team recently acted for Standard Chartered Bank in the recovery of $140m of secured assets in Tanzania, where security was provided in relation to the client’s investment in a local power plant, and also represented Simetra Global Assets in proceedings against a London-based FCA defendant regarding the misappropriation of $375m worth of investments. AB Bank is also a key client.

Enyo Law LLP is β€˜an excellent boutique firm’ with β€˜outstanding lawyers capable of taking on the most complex and high-value work’. The team has substantial experience in managing cases before the High Court of England and Wales, and regularly handles fraud-related arbitration in seats across multiple jurisdictions. In a recent highlight, the team represented The Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) in a claim against French bank SocGen regarding corrupt payments funnelled through a Libyan intermediary, and also advised the same client in claims against Goldman Sachs in relation to a series of derivative transactions. The department is co-headed by Pietro Marino, who β€˜has fantastic work ethic and is always focused on getting to the bottom of the matter’, and Edward Allen, who β€˜has excellent judgement as to how litigation tactics might play out’.

Fieldfisher’s β€˜knowledgeable and driven’ team has β€˜a strong reputation in civil fraud’ and β€˜attracts high-profile clients in multimillion-pound fraud claims’. The firm regularly handles matters involving freezing, search and passport orders, and is increasingly involved in private prosecutions, most notably across Russia and the CIS. Highlights included acting for one of four defendants in a claim for over $368m worth of oil payments, which were alleged to have been diverted as part of a major fraud, and representing PricewaterhouseCoopers as liquidators of Goldtrail in a case related to a fraud carried out by the latter’s former principal. Practice head Tony Lewis is β€˜level-headed, experienced and creative’ and is β€˜an effective organiser who always approaches cases strategically’. The β€˜commercial and bright’ Kit Jarvis is also recommended along with Alexandra Underwood, who β€˜knows freezing orders inside out’.

Gowling WLG provides β€˜commercial and practical advice in complex situations’ and β€˜has great strength and depth in the team, given its international coverage’. The firm is particularly strong in asset tracing matters, and also has notable expertise in financial services, contentious trusts, insolvency and anti-bribery. Practice head James Sidwell specialises in disputes across the banking and financial services sectors, and, along with Andrew Witts, acted for The Federal Republic of Brazil and The Municipality of Sao Paulo in proceedings against two companies on the grounds of unjust enrichment. The team also continues to advise First Peninsula Trustees in a multijurisdictional litigation arising out of Madoff’s Ponzi scheme.

Herbert Smith Freehills LLP brings β€˜an enormous amount of litigation experience to the table, both in civil fraud and in specialist areas such as banking, trusts and private wealth, which is of enormous value in complex cases’. The department’s client list includes Alpha Bank, Jyske Bank and Bernard Ecclestone, and the firm recently acted for the latter in a series of connected matters related to the sale of Formula 1 shares by a German Bank, Bayerische Landesbank, to a US private equity firm, and also represented several entities including Tarek Investments, Pontwelly Holdings and AH Overseas in a high-profile shareholder dispute. In another highlight, the team defended Jyske Bank before the Supreme Court of Gibraltar in proceedings brought by the liquidators of Marrache & Co. The team is headed by the β€˜calm and strategic’ Jeremy Garson who β€˜is very hands-on and relentless in his pursuit of the opposition’. Philip Carrington is adept at handling cross-border matters, and Gary Milner-Moore specialises in fraud matters involving breach of directors’ duties, economic torts and secondary liability.

King & Wood Mallesons specialises in asset tracing and internal investigations, and regularly handles a broad range of complex fraud cases across multiple jurisdictions. The team is also adept at crisis management and both internal and external PR issues, along with anti-corruption matters, whistleblowing cases and breaches of statutory duty. Work highlights have included defending Marshall Capital in a fraud and deceit claim brought by VTB in the English High Court; representing the liquidators of an unregulated collective investment scheme in relation to various fraud and insolvency matters; and acting for a shareholder in a dispute with a chain of Russian supermarkets. Dorothy Murray is the key name to note.

Macfarlanes LLP is β€˜an excellent choice for clients and foreign law firms involved in large civil fraud cases with an international dimension’. Recent work included representing The British Bankers’ Association (BBA) and BBA LIBOR in seven suits alleging fraud in the US, a case which is part of a larger enforcement action against various banks including Barclays, UBS and RBS, and acting for Danish financial institution Roskilde Bank in cross-border proceedings alleging fraudulent mis-selling of the bank’s subordinated debt. The team is co-headed by James Popperwell, who is β€˜adept at managing the challenges that arise in complex, cross-border fraud disputes’, and Iain Mackie, who specialises in large-scale financial services litigation.

The β€˜responsive, effective and professional’ team Osborne Clarke LLP has a strong track record in cross-border fraud and asset tracing disputes, and also handles Bribery Act and corruption investigations on behalf of its corporate clients in the energy and infrastructure sectors. Recent work includes representing Kenvett in English High Court proceedings regarding alleged fraud between business partners, a matter worth upwards of $200m, and acting for claimant Koch Media, who sought to recover the proceeds of a fraud involving an employee and an English business. Adrian Lifely and Tom Ellis co-head the practice, and Andrew Bartlett wins plaudits for his β€˜practical and pragmatic approach’.

Pinsent Masons LLP provides β€˜a faultless level of service, carefully outlining all threats and opportunities’ and β€˜managing each case with consummate ease’. The group has significant expertise in obtaining freezing, disclosure and passport delivery up orders, and regularly deals with fraud committed in offshore jurisdictions. Aeroflot, Gold Point Media and LLB Verwaltung (Schweiz) are amongst key clients, and the firm is currently defending the latter in a multimillion-pound fraud claim regarding a non-existent investment project and investment sum misappropriation. The group is also acting for Aeroflot in various proceedings against the estate of the late Boris Berezovsky and associates, who allegedly defrauded the client of a significant proportion of international income. Alan Sheeley heads the department, and is currently defending two major banks in fraud-related claims.

Reed Smith LLP handles global and domestic fraud disputes across the banking, pharmaceutical, investment and energy sectors, advising on the full spectrum of issues including freezing orders, search and seize relief, disclosure orders and forensic asset tracing. Notable work included acting for Osiris Trust in a dispute with a former solicitor, a high-profile matter involving allegations of fraud and perversion of the course of justice, and representing HCA International in civil proceedings following the bankruptcy of a senior employee guilty of fraud. Eoin O’Shea, Charles Hewetson and Patrick Beale are the key practitioners.

Taylor Wessing LLP’s team of β€˜top-drawer litigators’ is β€˜supported by an excellent team of associates’, which β€˜makes it a firm of choice for serious allegations of fraud’. The group is known for its expertise in the financial services sector, and also maintains a strong track record in sanctions, anti-bribery and compliance matters along with global corruption investigations. The firm is currently representing Castle Investment Fund in a cross-border multiparty litigation regarding business deadlines between three Russian businessmen, a case involving allegations of fraud, transactions at undervalue and unlawful means conspiracy. Practice co-heads David de Ferrars and Shane Gleghorn are β€˜known for their excellent experience and judgement in the civil fraud area’.

Ashurst is β€˜very thorough and skilled in the field of civil fraud’, acting for a range of leading corporates and financial investigations in misappropriated asset recovery matters and conspiracy cases. Practice head Angela Pearson has β€˜a strong commercial sense’ and β€˜is very good at managing client relationships’; Lynn Dunne specialises in insolvency, restructuring and banking disputes; and Edward Sparrow undertakes a broad range of banking and regulatory work. Sparrow recently represented Nomura Bank International in a fraud matter arising from its structured project transaction with an international businessman, and Dunne defended Cerberus against allegations of unlawful conspiracy between the client and RBS. Other active clients include Anglo American, Daiwa and RoadChef.

Bivonas Law LLP is β€˜a niche firm which has built up an outstanding reputation in the civil fraud field’, and has β€˜a strong wealth of international expertise, working with different jurisdictions including Russia, Spain, Asia and the US’. The team has a strong financial services offering, and is increasingly handling alternative dispute resolution matters involving breaches of fiduciary duty, bankruptcy and allegations of defrauding. Key partners include Antony Brown, a β€˜great leader with a personable attitude’; John Bechelet, a β€˜highly responsive, no-nonsense lawyer who has a strong ability to pitch explanations and advice in an understandable language’; and Russian advocate Geliya Chukmarova, who specialises in Russian civil, commercial and regulatory litigation.

Brown Rudnick LLP’s team of β€˜effective international fraud lawyers’ makes the firm β€˜a serious option for any litigant’. Key partner Jane Colston is β€˜a dynamic and creative practitioner’ who β€˜brings a fabulous intellect, credibility and command of law along with incredible strategic thinking and client-facing skills’. Neil Micklethwaite is the other name to note, and is a β€˜heavyweight stalwart who is engaged in the biggest cases’. Micklethwaite is currently representing Hermitage Capital Management in a high-profile matter related to the destruction of the Hermitage Fund by the Russian authorities, a case involving asset tracing and fraud proceedings in Guernsey, the BVI, New York and Russia. In another highlight, the team acted for National Bonds Corporation (NBC) in proceedings before the DIFC Courts in relation to a Β£300m property development.

Farrer & Co’s β€˜energetic and hands-on’ team β€˜adopts strategic and well thought-out approaches which achieve the client’s objectives as expeditiously and efficiently as possible’. The firm specialises in international, multiparty fraud claims involving freezing orders and asset tracing issues, and is notably strong in the financial services sector. Work highlights included advising GB Minerals Holdings in a dispute concerning alleged bribery activity, and representing RP Explorer Master Fund before the Commercial Court in an $80m fraud claim against multiple defendants, a case arising from the client’s investments on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange. Practice head Adrian Parkhouse is β€˜a sensible litigator with an eye for the real issues in a case’, and Kate Allass is β€˜very reassuring when it comes to managing client expectations and concerns’.

Kingsley Napley LLP advises a mix of claimants and defendants on the full range of civil fraud issues including breach of fiduciary duty, deceit, contempt of court and bribery and corruption. Richard Foss heads the practice, and has a notable track record in advising directors and management teams on fraud matters, and commercial litigation specialist William Christopher is recommended for contractual disputes and insolvency-related issues. Fiona Simpson is also a key practitioner, and recently represented the son of a Kazakh businessman who was facing multiple claims of fraud related to his involvement with JSC BTA Bank, successfully securing a favourable result. Confiance, Reditum Capital and Foster Care Associates are also key clients.

Morrison & Foerster (UK) LLP has β€˜a strong knowledge of tactics in the fraud arena’ and is β€˜always available to provide sensible, level-headed advice’. Representing a range of financial institutions, funds and multinational companies, the group is well-placed to handle all types of asset tracing and trust-related disputes, as well as domestic fraud investigations and enforcement actions. The firm continues to act for the liquidators of Saad Investments Company, dealing with banks and assets across a variety of jurisdictions, and has also represented the Icelandic administrators of Landsbanki in several successful asset recovery and High Court actions against major retailers. The β€˜exceptional’ Jonathan Wheeler heads the practice and β€˜has a superb sense of tactics’, and Kevin Roberts is β€˜great at identifying pressure points in order to achieve a settlement’.

Norton Rose Fulbright’s wide-ranging practice encompasses cross-border fraud and asset tracing matters along with insolvency, cyber fraud and bribery and corruption, and the department utilises the firm’s regulatory investigations and criminal law practices both domestically and on an international level. Work highlights included representing Citibank in a $285m Commercial Court dispute over financing transactions entered into with Citigroup Global Markets, and acting for the liquidators of Drive Assist UK in a High Court claim against its former CEO, alleging wrongful trading and breach of duty as a result of false accounting. Deirdre Walker heads the department, where Ruth Cowley and Matthew Waudby are also leading figures.

Following its three-firm merger in May 2017, CMS β€˜continues to provide an excellent level of service’ and β€˜has a great strength and depth within the team’. The department is noted for its β€˜great knowledge of Russia’, and regularly handles cross-border fraud disputes involving Russian and CIS jurisdictions. Key active clients include Par-La-Ville Hotel and Residences, Guralp Systems and Yukos Capital, and the firm is currently representing the latter in a Commercial Court claim against individuals who allegedly acquired shares by means of a rigged auction. Practice head Bernard O’Sullivan is β€˜a lateral thinker who doesn’t scare easily’ and β€˜always puts his client’s interests first’. CMS

Slaughter and May is β€˜consistently superb in major, high-pressure cases’ and β€˜always remains calm and works hard to ensure that everything is resolved to perfection’. The team receives a strong flow of mandates from a broad range of business sectors, advising on investigations, litigation and arbitration in the context of civil fraud. Highlights included advising Barratt Development in civil proceedings against defendant company Top Construction Services, a matter involving bribery allegations and a Metropolitan Police Service investigation. The β€˜smart and experienced’ Deborah Finkler heads the team; Jonathan Cotton is β€˜particularly strong in money laundering and financial crime work’; and Efstathios Michael is β€˜always on top of every detail’.

At Stewarts Law LLP, highlights have included acting for the claimants in a long-running claim for breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duties and dishonesty in relation to assets across various jurisdictions; representing Kaupthing in a €500m claim arising from the sale of banking derivatives during the financial crisis; and acting for Chesterfield United and Partridge Management Group in claims against Deutsche Bank in relation to two credit derivative transactions funded by Kaupthing. Clive Zietman heads the practice, and Sean Upson is praised for his β€˜immaculate legal mind and keen sense of the commercial’.

Travers Smith LLP is β€˜an excellent firm to go to on large-scale dispute resolution matters’, as clients comment it has β€˜a stellar practice’. The department is headed by Stephen Paget-Brown, an β€˜enormously experienced lawyer’ who is β€˜extremely good at case analysis and can easily see the bigger picture whilst also identifying the core issues’. Other leading practitioners include Huw Jenkin, a β€˜very hands-on advocate whose case knowledge is second to none’; Rob Fell, who is β€˜very good in multifaceted cases with regulatory angles’; and Andrew King, who β€˜has an amazing way of explaining complex concepts simply and effectively’. Highlights for the firm included representing Hewlett Packard Enterprise in fraud claims arising from the $11.1bn acquisition of Autonomy Corporation.

Withers LLP is β€˜an excellent firm with a real understanding of civil fraud cases’, and the team β€˜does great work for both claimants and defendants, paying real attention to detail in the interim stages and doing what is required to take a case to trial’. The firm’s well-established international practice covers the US, Hong Kong and the British Virgin Islands, and recent work has included a wide range of high-value international fraud cases. Examples include representing Ivanbridge Company and the Ivan Trust in a fraud matter involving €7.6m in Trust funds, a matter spanning Luxembourg and Liechtenstein, and acting for QPR Holdings in a claim regarding various loan repayments. Stephen Ross heads the practice and has β€˜impeccable judgement, always remaining calm and reacting quickly and flexibly to fluid situations’.

Cooke, Young & Keidan LLP is β€˜a well-respected boutique firm which wins high-quality, high-value work’ and β€˜punches above its weight due to its competitive rates, combined with excellent client care and legal and strategic excellence’. The team is notably strong in bank and finance-related fraud cases, handling high-profile investigations into domestic and overseas parties. Key names to note include the β€˜hugely energetic’ Marc Keidan, who β€˜has an unrivalled commitment to client needs and has a great ability to think outside the box’; founding partner Gerald Cooke; and Philip Young, who acts for a range of blue-chip companies in litigation and arbitration.

Devonshires Solicitors LLP maintains a strong client base in the housing and regulatory sectors, acting for a number of housing providers and regulatory bodies on fraud matters, cross-border investigations, regulatory issues and PFI disputes. Work highlights included advising the Solicitors Regulation Authority in seven interventions to close solicitors’ firms, undertaking all accounting investigations and numerous applications to set aside interventions. Key figure Philip Barden has a strong track record in both litigation and mediation, and Matthew Hennessy-Gibbs is noted for his expertise in cases involving the Isle of Man, the British Virgin Islands and various Middle Eastern jurisdictions.

At Dorsey & Whitney, highlights included representing a high-profile investment company in numerous investigations brought by a number of regulatory authorities, successfully obtaining a favourable settlement following an internal investigation; defending a major public company in connection with an SEC investigation following a financial restatement; and acting for a client in an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission into alleged trading violations. Managing partner Tim Maloney is the key contact.

The β€˜professional, efficient and responsive’ team at Edwin Coe LLP has β€˜a strong level of experience in this field, particularly in the frequently overlapping areas of insolvency and fraud’, and is β€˜excellent at handling clients and producing very good results’. The firm regularly acts for claimant groups of consumers and shareholders, and has handled a number of multimillion-pound bankruptcy and corporate Ponzi fraud matters. Recent work includes representing a group of 500 claimants in proceedings arising from the fraudulent selling of timeshare products by St Frances Marketing, and acting for the creditors of the collapsed Crown Currency Exchange, an operation run as a Ponzi scheme. David Greene is β€˜unflappable, practical and realistic’, and Ali Zaidi β€˜strikes up good working relationships with clients’.

Eversheds Sutherland (International) LLP is known for its representation of financial services clients, most notably in relation to fraud matters conducted by individual directors and employees, and the team also regularly advises on investigations in developing markets. The firm recently represented National Iranian Oil Company in a High Court challenge to a multi-billion dollar arbitration award regarding a long-term gas sales contract, and currently acts for Centinel Spine in a claim brought by its liquidators alleging that intellectual property was fraudulently transferred to Centinel by Surgicraft. Key practitioners include Neville Byford and Neill Blundell along with Mariafrancesca De Leo, who joined from the firm’s Milan office and brings significant multijurisdictional expertise to the London team.

Fladgate LLP’s β€˜excellent partner-led litigation team’ wins plaudits for its β€˜great commercial approach and solid judgement’, and is β€˜a strong contender in the civil fraud market’. The firm is noted for its strong international focus with multiple foreign desks; examples include acting for a Swiss claimant in a matter regarding unpaid returns by a bank and alleged conspiracy to defraud, and advising PCP Capital Partners in alleged fraudulent misrepresentations made by Barclays, into which the client had invested Β£3bn in Middle Eastern money. Simon Ekins heads the practice, and Sophia Purkis β€˜fights tenaciously for her clients and has a long track record of successes.

HFW’s β€˜hugely experienced fraud litigators excel on all cases, are easily accessible on a 24/7 basis and have strong expertise in multijurisdictional matters’. The firm is particularly strong in insolvency-related litigation, advising on matters which emerge out of contentious administration, and also handles cases involving asset tracing, freezing injunctions and complex trust structures. Practice head Noel Campbell is β€˜a seasoned litigator and master strategist’, and recently represented the liquidators of the Arena Group of companies in a matter involving allegations of dishonest assistance, unlawful means of conspiracy and breach of trust.

Ince & Co has β€˜extensive experience of handling large, complex fraud cases’, and is best known for its strengths in the shipping, trade and insurance sectors. Highlights included acting for HDI Global in a major marine insurance case regarding fraudulent conduct in the presentation of insurance claims, a €3.2m claim with significant industry sector impact, and representing Novoship (UK) before the Court of Appeal in a long-running dispute concerning bribery and secret profits. Ben Ogden heads the team, where insurance expert Joe O’Keeffe is the other key figure.

Latham & Watkins continues to handle a broad array of high-profile, cross-border fraud matters across the US, Europe, the CIS and the Middle East. Oliver Browne is a key name to note, specialising in international arbitration across various sectors, and Philip Clifford has substantial experience in the oil and gas, power and financial services industries.

Signature Litigation LLP’s β€˜outstanding’ practice is β€˜a force to be reckoned with in the civil fraud disputes area’, and the team β€˜shows great client care and ultimate professionalism’. The group saw a number of significant hires in the last year, former practice head Simon Bushell from Latham & Watkins and Josh Wong from DLA Piper being among the most notable. The firm currently represents Blue Tropic and Coppella Ventures in a high-value claim for damages under Georgian law, where the two claimant companies allege significant misappropriation of assets. Graham Huntley and Julian Connerty co-head the practice.

Squire Patton Boggs continues to attract significant litigation and arbitration cases, primarily containing cross-border elements involving the US and the Middle East. Key areas of expertise include international fraud and asset tracing claims, asset-based lending matters and banking litigation, Close Invoice Finance and ABN AMRO Commercial Finance being notable clients. Laurence Winston heads the litigation team, and specialist fraud lawyer Robert Weekes is also recommended.

Browne Jacobson LLP is β€˜an excellent performer in the area of civil fraud’ and has β€˜an acknowledged expertise in the niched and difficult area of cross-border insolvency’. The team’s β€˜knowledge is effectively brought to bear in litigation, particularly in cases involving an international element’. Highlights included representing a former managing director of JPMorgan Chase following losses of over $6.2bn, and advising a trustee in relation to proceedings issued against a bankrupt company in Gibraltar. Dominic Offord is β€˜a very astute lawyer with a real depth of knowledge’, and Derek Bambury is β€˜able to navigate difficult waters with skill’.

Capsticks LLP has a strong knowledge of the public sector, advising a broad mix of clients on a range of fraud issues. Daniel Purcell is the key practitioner and regularly provides counter-fraud services to NHS bodies, advising on procurement, identity and sick pay fraud along with Bribery Act and anti-corruption matters. Associate Jane Barker is also a name to note.

At Cooley (UK) LLP, James Maton advises companies and governments on various contractual, commercial and regulatory disputes, and Laurence Harris acts for public and private companies and public sector bodies in fraud and asset tracing matters. Recent work includes advising the Turks and Caicos Islands Government on civil recovery efforts in relation to a major land sale, and representing a former Serco Company director in an SFO investigation regarding a contract with the Ministry of Justice.

Dechert LLP’s β€˜client-oriented, creative and cost competitive’ team has a solid track record in asset recovery matters and fraud investigations. Highlights included acting for an individual in a claim against a Russian oligarch, a matter revolving around Russian company Rusal, and representing NML Capital in long-running claims against Argentina following the latter’s defaults in payment. Andrew Hearn and David Hughes are the key figures.

Fox Williams LLP is β€˜more than capable of dealing with major cases’, and the team is β€˜able to get to grips with complex facts and present them in the form of clear and concise instructions’. The firm is increasingly being instructed on cross-border disputes, internal investigations and business crime matters, some key client names including Salem Mouzner, Pamplona Strategic Developments and Samir Arab. Practice head Gavin Foggo is β€˜careful, analytical and has immensely good judgement’.

Howard Kennedy LLP maintains a strong reputation in the financial services area, representing a mix of banks and financial institutions in multiparty, cross-border fraud matters. The group also has significant insolvency and professional negligence expertise, advising on civil fraud claims involving insolvent companies and allegations of constructive partnership. Managing partner Craig Emden is the key contact along with Simon Taylor, who heads the dispute resolution practice.

John Magnin heads the team at K&L Gates LLP, which has a strong track record in high-profile fraud cases involving international unauthorised dealings with both assets and cash. The group recently acted for the joint receivers of the Axiom Legal Financing Fund in a fraud claim against various professionals, financial services companies and peripheral individuals, and representing The Central Bank of Ecuador in longstanding proceedings arising from the 1996 collapse of Banco Continental.

Keystone Law is β€˜building up a strong reputation in this practice area’ and β€˜is particularly well placed to handle complex commercial fraud disputes’. The team works with a range of banks, businesses and individuals on fraud prevention and resolution, and has recently advised Nest Investments in a claim against a Lebanese bank which was shut down by the United States Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. Key figure Robert Lawrie is β€˜a very experienced individual’ who β€˜has razor-sharp legal skills and is extremely user friendly’.

Mayer Brown International LLP provides β€˜an outstanding legal service which effectively assists clients in making their decisions’, and the team β€˜always takes commercial values into consideration’. The practice is comprised of lawyers from the dispute resolution, restructuring and insolvency teams, and the group is also supported by specialist financial services, regulatory enforcement, insurance and corporate departments. Devi Shah is the key figure along with Alistair Graham, who is praised for his β€˜ability to understand the client’s business and provide sound legal advice’.

Moon Beever is β€˜a niche firm which is excellent in civil fraud investigations’, and the β€˜strong team’ of β€˜knowledgeable and experienced partners’ provides β€˜great value for money’. Practice head Frances Coulson is β€˜highly recommended in all aspects of fraud, settlement negotiation and strategic cases’, and barrister Richard Saunders is β€˜an experienced advocate and an excellent litigator’. Key clients of the firm include British Gas, KPMG and Grant Thornton.

SCA Ontier LLP’s β€˜creative and responsive’ team is β€˜extremely good at dealing with requests and enquiries’. The group handles the full spectrum of corporate crime issues, and has recently been engaged in a number of investigations and compliance issues for major corporates. Seamus Andrew leads the practice and specialises in international litigation and arbitration, and Paul Ferguson has strong insolvency expertise.

The β€˜excellent’ practice at Seddons is headed by Susan Monty, who has β€˜a wealth of experience in complex fraud cases’ and β€˜combines a high level of intelligence with a commercial approach, steering clients through cases and excellently managing their expectations’. The team advises on financial disputes, regulatory and disciplinary proceedings, asset tracing and internal investigations.

Simons Muirhead & Burton’s β€˜thriving civil litigation practice’ is β€˜vastly experienced in fraud allegations, and is extremely competent in internal investigations and litigation’. Practice head Anthony Burton is β€˜an immensely experienced and well-respected solicitor’; Stephen Shotnes is β€˜tenacious, diligent and thinks outside of the box’; and Razi Mireskandari heads the overall dispute resolution team.

Steptoe & Johnson UK LLP is currently acting for independent Russian bank Otkritie in proceedings to enforce a judgement made against various individual fraudsters, a case involving significant recovery of assets and freezing orders, and the team has recently commenced two further actions against parties implicated in the fraud. Other notable clients include the National Bank of Moldova, Trust Bank and a number of high-profile individuals. Neil Dooley is the key figure.

TLT advises on fraud prevention, financial services litigation, private prosecutions and cybercrime, amongst other issues. The group is also handling a number of payment fraud matters, and is currently dealing with several cases for major banks related to invoice, mandate, impersonation and safe account fraud. Notable individuals include Emily Benson, who has substantial expertise in financial crime risk management and recovery strategies, and Jake McQuitty, who deals with infrastructure and banking-related matters. Russell Kelsall is also a name to note in the non-contentious regulatory space.

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