White-collar crime in Poland
A key feature of Clifford Chance's white-collar, regulatory ad compliance team is that it is able to draw on the firm's international office network, enabling the team to handle cross-border corporate investigations around the CEE region. The group is knowledgeable on the UK Bribery Act and the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The team is also often called upon to represent corporates and individuals in Polish criminal proceedings, both as defendants and injured parties. An area of growth for the lawyers is criminal tax- and bankruptcy-related cases, where the group has experience representing clients before criminal and administrative courts. Heading the team is Marcin Ciemiński, who is a highly experienced defence counsel, and also advises on regulatory and internal investigations, concerning corruption and fraud. Counsel Paweł Pogorzelski has developed a strong practice concerning investigatory issues involving Poland and the region; senior associate Monika Diehl is increasingly active in regulatory and compliance matters.
Other key lawyers:
Paweł Pogorzelski; Monika Diehl; Michał Magdziak
‘Clifford Chance’s white collar crime team has an unique expertise in the field and great experience. Their individual approach towards the client together with their practical knowledge contribute a lot to great client-advisor relationship. The team collaborated very well with other external advisors of mine and provided comprehensive assistance.’
‘Marcin Ciemiński is one of the best legal advisors I have ever worked with. His comprehensive knowledge, calming attitude, so helpful in cases of a white collar crimes nature and his broad expertise make him a really valuable advisor.’
CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Pośniak i Bejm sp.k.'s 'client-centric' team is well versed in all types of business-related criminal law, with experience in investigations and criminal proceedings relating to anti-bribery, corruption and money laundering. The group is most known for its investigations work, advising companies on internal investigations and representing them in investigations launched by the authorities, while also advising on crisis management issues. It also has a compliance practice. 'Charismatic and passionate' Arkadiusz Korzeniewski heads the team in Warsaw, also leading the white-collar crime group across the CEE region. Senior associate Maciej Kópczyński often supports Korzeniewski, and is increasingly active in the cybercrime space, as is fellow senior associate Mariusz Minkiewicz.
Other key lawyers:
Maciej Kópczyński; Mariusz Minkiewicz
‘Throughout my relationship with this law firm I can confirm that lawyers are professional and willing to cooperate. They do emphasize the details and assist in the best way possible.’
‘Very good communication skills.’
‘Lawyers within CMS law firm are always available to assist their clients, at any time and even during public holidays.’
‘Customer centric firm! Fantastic customer focus – very approachable understanding, adjusting to customer, supportive in all aspects. Great advice.’
‘Arkadiusz Korzeniewski is a great communicator, client-centric, experienced, supportive, reachable and always following the needs and issues critical for the customer. Cooperation with Mr Korzeniewski is always a big pleasure!’
‘Professional, focused and passionate about their work – give comfort, composure – anticipate issues and prepare individuals for what they are likely to face – present things as they are to avoid any surprises’
‘Arkadiusz Korzeniewski – charismatic and passionate; wealth of experience; lets you sleep at night in difficult times’
‘Maciej Kopczynski – pragmatic, methodical and consistent in preparations; composed and providing comfort when one needs it most.’
‘I think this firm is unique because of the deep legal knowledge , the research of the case, the good relations with the opposing side and the respect the judge feels towards the firm. the team’s strength is the cooperation between the lawyers in our firm and theirs, without fear of hard work, very driven direct towards our mutual purpose, always believe that we will win – as we did.’
‘We worked with Arkadiusz Korzeniewski who stands out for his tremendous knowledge both legal and general, and his excellent connections . He gave us full attention and put all his efforts to the case and never gave up, even at times when it seemed lost. The legal procedure required diplomatic skills and legal knowledge of international criminal legal practice and I can say we were in the best legal hands. ’
‘It is unique in its experience, pro -active approach and correct risk assessment.’
The white-collar practice at Linklaters stands out for its breadth, covering compliance issues and corporate representations in investigations and high-profile criminal court proceedings. The team regularly leverages the firm's global office network to assist with the Polish aspects of cross-border investigations. In a demonstration of the firm's strength, practice head Tomasz Manicki is representing GetBack as the injured party in a criminal investigation into fraudulent activities by former management board members. On the compliance front, he is advising Polski Fundusz Rozwoju on anti-fraud and anti-corruption issues in connection with its Covid-19 relief programme. The group sits in the litigation department, which is led by Cezary Wiśniewski.
Tomasz Manicki; Cezary Wiśniewski
Polski Fundusz Rozwoju
DNB Bank Polska
DNB Assets Holdco
Santander Bank Polska
- Advised the Polski Fundusz Rozwoju on compliance with anti-fraud and anti-corruption issues in relation to its Covid-19 relief package.
- Representing GetBack as the aggrieved party in a criminal investigation conducted by the Regional Prosecutor’s Office in Warsaw, and as the subject of a regulatory investigation in front of the Polish Financial Supervisory Authority (KNF) concerning multiple fraudulent activities of the former management board, and senior officers of the company – which led to its insolvency.
- Representing the brokerage house DNB Bank Polska S.A. in criminal and associated civil (asset tracing and recovery) proceedings in connection with a high-value brokerage fraud committed by a representative of the bank to the detriment of a group of VIP customers
At Raczkowski, the group has expertise in high-stakes Polish investigations, representing individuals and corporates in a mixture of cases, involving criminal antitrust, tax, bribery and money laundering allegations. The group regularly brings this expertise to bear in compliance matters, advising on governance procedures and training programmes for local and international clients. The department is led by seasoned advocate and part-time judge Janusz Tomczak. Damian Tokarczyk is an anti-money laundering expert with experience representing suspects, defendants and injured parties in court proceedings. Łukasz Kuczkowski has expertise in HR compliance issues.
Other key lawyers:
Łukasz Kuczkowski; Damian Tokarczyk
‘The team is very efficient and fast in providing feedback. The approach to the client is always extremely professional. In addition to that, great flexibility and unique experience in working with international clients (especially multinational companies). Perfect use of legal English.‘
‘Janusz Tomczak is an outstanding partner of the firm. He is the point of reference for all business crime issues in Poland. Mr. Tocmzak is the most appreciated lawyer from Poland in the international network (international and American bar association networks).’
At Soltysinski Kawecki & Szlezak, the firm takes a multidisciplinary approach to white-collar criminal defence, utilising the its strong tax, competition, employment and IP departments. The group is instructed by corporates and individuals on investigations and criminal litigation, notably in relation to corruption, fraud, tax fraud, cybercrime and money laundering. Heading the group is Tomasz Konopka, a highly regarded criminal defence lawyer with substantial experience before the Polish courts. Katarzyna Randzio-Sajkowska is another name to note, particularly for cross-border investigations, where she has expertise in the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. Senior associate Michał Opala is building a strong practice in compliance issues.
Other key lawyers:
Katarzyna Randzio-Sajkowska; Michał Opala
- Served as anti-piracy and anti-counterfeiting outside counsel to Microsoft Corporation.
Wardynski & Partners
The team at Wardynski & Partners is praised for showing 'amazing courage' in its handling of pro bono human rights-related cases in cooperation with Polish NGOs. The practice as a whole consists of internal and governmental investigations, as well as criminal litigation arising out of allegations of fraud, bribery, money laundering and bid rigging. The department is led by litigator Łukasz Lasek, who represents individuals and corporates. Artur Pietryka, vice-chair of the human rights committee of the Polish bar council, is a criminal law specialist and has expertise in corporate criminal liability. Jakub Znamierowski focuses on economic crime, while Maria Kozłowska specialises in advising corporates on the implementation of their anti-corruption, whistleblowing and internal investigations procedures.
Other key lawyers:
Artur Pietryka; Jakub Znamierowski; Maria Kozłowska; Bartosz Troczyński
‘The team is fluent in many areas of law. Moreover they are extremely open to pro bono legal aid and cooperation with NGOs.’
‘Combination of knowledge of criminal law and business practices. Short clear advice. Fast. Good English. Not so expensive.’
- Advising a major retail chain in the CEE region on a far-ranging internal investigation.
- Advised a major multi-national retail chain on criminal aspects of the acquisition of over 300 stores in Poland which had belonged to another multi-national retail chain.
- Defending a Ukrainian national in extradition initiated by the Russian Federation, which is investigating the client for alleged corporate raiding.
B2R Law Jankowski Stroiński Zięba
B2R Law Jankowski Stroiński Zięba has carved a niche in representing individuals in high-profile criminal proceedings, with a significant caseload involving political and human rights issues. The group is led by co-founding partner Bartlomiej Jankowski, an advocate with exceptional court experience as well as a solid government investigations practice. Associate Kacper Oleksy specialises in financial criminal cases, including those arising from irregularities in the forex trading market.
Other key lawyers:
- Represented Weijing Wang in a high-profile case concerning criminal proceedings brought against him on charges of spying for the People’s Republic of China.
- Representing Abu Zubaydah as an aggrieved party in criminal proceedings regarding the CIA’s “Black Sites” in Poland.
- Representing Andrzej Jakubiak , the former President of the Financial Supervision Authority (KNF), in criminal proceedings regarding alleged negligence in public service.
The criminal litigation and internal investigations team at Dentons handles the spectrum of business-related criminal proceedings, including in relation to cybercrime, fraud and corruption The group also has extensive knowledge in anti-money laundering issues. As well as its contentious practice, the team is strong for compliance issues, where counsel Marcin Świderski takes the lead. Senior associate Joanna Kornaszewska is noted for her criminal defence work, as well as her pro bono practice focusing on freedom of expression and anti-hate speech issues. The group sits within the litigation department and is coordinated by Anna Maria Pukszto.
Anna Maria Pukszto
Other key lawyers:
Marcin Świderski; Joanna Kornaszewska
‘I would say that they are professionals in their field. ’
‘Marcin Świderski has a willingness to go an extra step or think ahead for his clients’
‘The team includes professionals that take care of their client’s business. The team is engaged, available and spells out legal risks clearly.’
‘Realistic approach with vast experience ’
‘Marcin Świderski has exceptional knowledge of his area of expertise and is able to explain it in a business-friendly manner.’
‘They have invaluable experience.’
‘I have worked with Marcin Świderski who has a great skill to explain difficult things in a very understandable way. He has a lot of experience of handling different cases and makes everything run smoothly.’
‘In-depth analysis of each case and ability to keep very high level of professionalism while being able to build personal relations.’
‘Professionalism on an exceptional level, detailed preparation for each case, pro-customer approach.’
‘Business-driven approach, finding solutions, spotting the risks on time, responsive and prompt’
Philips Medical Systems Nederland
MAN SE, Man Truck & Bus Polska
White Star Real Estate
- Conducted a large-scale internal investigation into possible corrupt practices for a global medical device manufacturer’s local subsidiary against the backdrop of US FCPA proceedings, as well as representing the client in the related criminal case before domestic authorities.
- Conducted an internal review for an investment bank in connection with a criminal investigation into a €500m state acquisition in the Polish infrastructure sector, in which the client provided transaction advisory services to the buyer.
- Advised an automotive manufacturer on allegations and irregularities reported by the law enforcement authorities in connection with a high-profile corruption investigation into one of the client’s projects.
DLA Piper's government and internal investigations practice is well developed, with exceptional expertise in matters including anti-bribery, anti-money laundering and fraud issues. Integrated into the global firm, the group is also well placed to advise on due diligence projects involving the UK Bribery Act and the the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. In addition to advisory work, lawyers regularly represent individuals and corporates in criminal tax proceedings and other business criminal cases. The department is led by former prosecutor Tomasz Rudyk, who has expertise leading internal investigations into violations of anti-bribery laws. Senior associate Dominika Wolf-Jezierska works with both defendants and injured parties, especially in criminal tax cases, and has substantial court experience. Senior associate Piotr Falarz is another name to note for investigations and compliance work.
Other key lawyers:
Dominika Wolf-Jezierska; Piotr Falarz; Magdalena Dec; Paweł Matej
‘Huge experience of the team members and involvement in each case they handle.’
‘Dominika Wolf-Jezierska is an outstanding lawyer who let her clients believe their matters are carried out by the right person with a proper knowledge and experience. She knows the laws and regulations very well and is able to use them appropriately even in complex and non-obvious cases. ’
‘The White-Collar Crime team of DLA Piper Poland supported me in a criminal matter. The lawyers, acting as defence attorneys, were very innovative and demonstrated outstanding experience concerning representation in the course of the criminal proceedings. They were committed to their work from the very beginning. In my opinion they are hard-working, open-minded and well-organized. ’
‘Tomasz Rudyk, Partner of WCC team, is in my opinion extremely high skilled lawyer with a pragmatic approach and always dedicated to find best solutions to the arising problems during the trial. Dominika Wolf-Jezierska, Senior Associate, is very experienced in managing criminal cases and provides sound legal advice during the ongoing proceedings. She is always available, responsive and very devoted. I consider them as top specialists in this field of expertise.’
‘Analysis of the case and its resolution at a satisfactory level. In addition, professional service and good contact with the customer.’
At Domanski Zakrzewski Palinka, the 'top-notch' white-collar criminal defence team is regularly instructed on matters of economic and financial fraud, corruption and conflict issues involving public officials, money laundering and cybercrime. The group is highly experienced in crisis situations, with the ability to deploy crisis management services. Department head Hanna Gajewska-Kraczkowska supplements her expertise in criminal business law with knowledge of press and human rights law. Artur Nowak's tax background places him in a good position to assist with fiscal criminal cases.
Other key lawyers:
Artur Nowak; Rafał Karbowniczek
‘Very experienced and pragmatic team. Excellent cooperation and solution approach.’
‘All team members are at a top-notch level.’
‘Rafał Karbowniczek is client oriented, very experienced white-collar crime lawyer with huge know-how.’
‘ The DZP team is well established in business criminal law, with particular strength in corruption issues, cyber crime and criminal proceedings. It regularly represents clients in local investigations and assist senior management in criminal matters.’
‘Rafal Karbowniczek is a confident, trustworthy advocate, 100% dedicated to clients needs and expectations’
- Representing the provider of special purposes vessels (an aggrieved party) in criminal proceedings following a business email compromise as a result of which the company lost money transferred to Poland and subsequently to Hong Kong, Dubai and Singapore.
- Defending the CEO of construction company in pending criminal proceedings in which he is charged with misleading the company and using forged documents;
- Advice to an art foundation on the sale of works of art.
Greenberg Traurig Grzesiak sp. k.'s team is part of the firm's renowned global white-collar criminal defence group, and in Warsaw, is able to bring together expertise in banking and finance, corporate, bankruptcy and labour law. The practice group is led by experienced litigator Paweł Pietkeiwicz, who is instructed in a number of highly sensitive criminal cases. Senior associate Antoni Libiszowski is another name to note.
Other key lawyers:
Swiss Opora A.G.
Assa Abbloy Mercor Doors sp. z o.o.
- Representing CEDC International in a court action to set aside and resist enforcement of the Uncitral arbitration award granting compensation to one of the largest FMCG distributors in Poland for alleged breach of the representations and warranties included in an M&A transaction in the context of an alleged fraudulent carousel VAT scheme.
- Representing Assa Abbloy Mercor Doors in various civil and criminal proceedings against former employees of its subsidiary in Poland who carried out acts of unfair competition to the detriment of the client.
The business crime department at Laszczuk & Partners represents Polish and foreign clients in high-profile domestic proceedings, as well as the Polish aspects of cross-border enforcement matters. In addition to criminal defence, lawyers also represent injured parties seeking restitution. The group is increasingly active in the new technologies cases and has experience in criminal issues related to blockchain. Team leader Jan Rysiński is well versed in compliance issues. Justyna Szpara is another experienced litigator.
Other key lawyers:
Justyna Szpara; Patrycja Piotrowska; Agnieszka Zwierzyńska
‘Very experienced counsels. Highly practical and efficient approach to a case. ’
‘Great experience and practice with respect to white collar crimes. Good sense and prediction on how a case might evolve (Jan Rysinski). High commitment and devotion to a case (Patrycja Piotrowska).’
- Represented a Swiss client in criminal and parallel civil proceedings concerning a €3m fraud.
- Represented a major Polish employment agency in criminal proceedings concerning a €2m fraud.
- Represented a Polish company active in the blockchain industry in criminal proceedings concerning a €2.5-3.5m fraud.
At Rymarz Zdort, lawyers are experts in all phases of litigation and investigations, representing injured parties and defendants in criminal cases. The group's most notable capability is the representation of corporates in investigations, where it is able to draw upon the knowledge of the firm's other departments. Karina Aust-Niewiadomska heads the team, which includes regulatory expert Krzysztof Sajchta and senior associate Maria Szczepanska, whose practice spans anti-money laundering, anti-corruption and fraud cases.
act BSWW's lawyers specialise in criminal cases arising from business transactions, fiscal penal issues, as well as criminal liability in workplace accidents. The group also regularly represents executives facing allegations of bribery. Co-leading the group are Piotr Wojnar, whose practice involves capital markets-related criminal matters, and Piotr Pośnik, who is an expert in criminal economic law. Łukasz Piekarski also has experience of criminal proceedings.
Piotr Wojnar; Piotr Pośnik
Other key lawyers:
‘BSWW specializes in white-collar crimes, particularly related to the financial sector. The team has a broad knowledge of all aspect of the financial sector. The team understands the mechanisms of the financial sector and understands the problems and risks related to it. ’
‘I have worked with Piotr Wojnar, who is very experienced in white-collar cases related to the financial sector. He sees the case in all its aspects, including criminal, administrative and regulative. He is also very open for dialogue and discussion. He is always perfectly prepared for all meetings and activities.’
- Representing a financial institution in a court case resulting from improper performance of the management board president.
Chmielniak Adwokaci is a Katowice-based white-collar criminal defence boutique that focuses on representing individuals (a number of c-suite executives) and business entities as defendants and injured parties. Areas of particular activity are corruption, fraud, tax and economic criminal cases, as well as penal criminal tax disputes. Founding and managing partner Łukasz Chmielniak takes the lead and has extensive experience in individual representations. Robert Gniezdzia handles business risk and compliance issues.
Łukasz Chmielniak; Robert Gniezdzia
‘Fully professional and reliable team of people. Open communication, flexible cooperation, exceptional trust standards and flexible customer focused business model. ’
‘Openness, trust, sense of security and highest standards.’
‘Deep knowledge and experience in the field of fiscal penal law.’
‘I worked with Łukasz Chmielniak who was highly motivated and has a thorough knowledge of fiscal penal law.’
‘Chmielniak Adwokaci has interdisciplinary knowledge, many years of experience and competences in economic, business and tax matters. Their partners have served managing and supervisory bodies of capital companies for many years.’
‘Łukasz Chmielniak is a passionate lawyer, whose goal is to provide his clients with a fair and dignified trial. He is able to thoroughly analyse legal problems related to the area of white collar crime thanks to many years’ experience. He is very committed. ’
‘Excellent lawyers. They are extremely good in trials and all proceedings.’
‘Łukasz Chmielniak – outstanding and very effective. Very experienced in complicated court disputes. I believe he can win every case. Robert Gniezdzia – he combines law and management. He understands top executives’ role and liability as he acted as a board member himself in the banking sector.’
Crido Legal's team defends clients in criminal matters, as well as advising on compliance procedures. The group is predominantly known for tax-related matters, although work also includes anti-money laundering and anti-corruption issues. Lawyers also have experience in cross-border enforcement actions. Heading the group is counsel Katarzyna Witkowska, whose clients are a mixture of individuals and corporates.
The 'reliable' white-collar criminal team at DeBenedetti Majewski Szczesniak Kancelaria Prawnicza Sp. K. focuses on representing individuals as defendants, although it is increasingly also representing corporates as injured parties. Co-founding partner Jarosław Majewski takes the lead on criminal law matters, with significant expertise in the Polish banking sector.
DWF Poland Jamka Sp.k's white-collar and criminal compliance practice spans crisis management and internal investigations, injured-party representations, the implementation of compliance procedures and the criminal defence of individuals and corporates. Counsel Maciej Antoniak heads the team and has an active advisory practice on top of his business criminal representations. Senior associate Łukasz Gembiś has experience in cases involving anti-money laundering and terrorist financing regulations.
Other key lawyers:
Łukasz Gembiś; Michał Szumbarski
Jastrzębska Spółka Węglowa S.A.
Lubelski Węgiel Bogdanka S.A.
Orange Polska S.A.
Orlen Koltrans S.A.
Huta Zabrze S.A.
PZL Mielec Sp z o.o. (Subsidiary of Lockheed Martin)
Xella Polska SP. z o.o.
GEO Renewables S.A.
Dobra Energia dla Olsztyna Sp. z o.o.
- Represented one of GEO’s group companies in criminal proceedings regarding misappropriation of assets by a former board member.
- Represented Huta Zabrze, a Polish metallurgy company, in proceedings related to civil and criminal liability of a former member of the board related to the high-value procurements.
- Represented PZL Mielec (Polish manufacturer of Blackhawk helicopters) in criminal proceedings regarding potential irregularities in public tender proceedings.
At Kondracki Celej, lawyers are focused on representing private and corporate clients as defendants and victims of crime, with a specialism in professional misconduct and anti-corruption cases. Founding partner Marcin Kondracki heads the team, with exceptional experience in fiscal criminal representations and cybercrime cases. Associate Adam Domański is building a solid practice involving economic and tax criminal law, with experience in disciplinary proceedings.
Other key lawyers:
‘Marcin Kondracki leads a team of specialists in the field of white-collar with extensive practical experience. They are also experienced in the representation of injured parties.‘
‘The most important factor which makes the Kondracki Celej’s practice unique is their flexibility, the ability to think on the spot and come up with creative solutions in their client’s best interest. Always thinking about the long-term perspective, they are not only excellent attorneys but also great advisers on important matters. ‘
‘The team is very dedicated to the practice. Provides the clients with excellent advice, always very pro-active and protect clients.’
‘I value Marcin Kondracki’s knowledge and experience.’
Verdant Nature LLC branch in Poland
Teleskop sp. z o.o.
SciencePharma sp. z o.o. sp. k.
- Representing a public officer acting on behalf of the Polish Financial Supervision Authority in criminal proceedings regarding allegations of private financial gain in exchange for favourable treatment of one of the biggest banks on the Polish financial market.
- Advising the Polish branch of the American Company Verdant Nature LLC on ongoing compliance and regulatory issues concerning the minimising of risks connected to conducting business.
- Representing Teleskop as an injured party in the criminal proceeding against its former CEO, who is accused of mismanagement and abuse of trust.
The white-collar criminal defence practice at Wolf Theiss was established following the arrival of Arkadiusz Matusiak from Bird & Bird Szepietowski i wspólnicy sp. k. in January 2020. Matusiak has vast experience representing corporates in criminal proceedings, including investigations. Areas of particular expertise are anti-corruption, unfair practices, bribery cases and tax crime. Associate Damian Majda is another member of the team specialising in criminal litigation.