Rahman Ravelli > Halifax, England > Firm Profile

Rahman Ravelli

Crime, fraud and licensing > General crime and fraud Tier 1

Genuine powerhouseRahman Ravelli operates regionally, nationally and internationally. The firm has particular expertise in civil recovery proceedings, multi-jurisdictional civil fraud claims, and worldwide asset recovery cases. Clients also benefit from the team’s international sanctions experience. Managing partner Azizur Rahman - a ‘brilliant tactician’ known for complex sanctions work and multi-national fraud investigations - leads the team. ‘Star quality operatorNicola Sharp has an extensive track record in handling major financial investigations, while Syed Rahman is recommended for both sanctions work, and the developing area of cryptocurrency fraud.

Practice head(s):

Azizur Rahman

Other key lawyers:


‘Over the last ten years or so, Azizur Rahman has built the firm into a genuine powerhouse in the field of crime and fraud. What sets them apart is both the breadth of work they undertake but also the jurisdictions in which they undertake it. Many firms advertise themselves as having an international presence, but Rahman Ravelli genuinely does.’ 

‘An outstanding firm which deals with a broad range of crime from homicide to company fraud.’

‘Nicola Sharp is a star quality operator who provides the best service to her clients.’ 

‘In the field they service, they are at the top of the tree. The first call in civil and criminal fraud. They have a diverse team all totally committed to giving their clients value for money.’

‘Azizur Rahman – a brilliant tactician who gives clear and well structured advice.’ 

‘Nicola Sharp – a truly great commercial litigator. Very brave and hard working.’

‘Rahman Ravelli has become one of the fastest-growing and most highly-regarded, market-leading legal practices in its field and the firm strives to provide conflict-free, market-leading financial crime, cross-border investigations and complex commercial litigation advice.’

‘Azizur Rahman is the orchestrator of strategy and the clear and focused driving force behind the firm, always seeming to identify and fulfil client needs almost before they themselves appreciate that they need a policy on a topic, or advice on a matter. His skill in leading and managing legal teams, both in the UK and overseas, through all stages of a case has been proven to produce the strongest bespoke defence for the corporates, executives and UHNWIs that are his clients.’

Crime, fraud and licensing > Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals) Tier 3

Counting owners of financial institutions, UHNW individuals, and entrepreneurs among its key clients, Rahman Ravelli’s practice has a ‘wealth of legal talent’ and routinely handles white-collar crime, money laundering and tax evasion issues. The team has expertise in multi-jurisdictional investigations spanning the UK, Europe, US, Africa, and Asia, along with strong capabilities advising individual clients on complex sanctions matters, cryptocurrency fraud, and ESG-related financial crime. The ‘exceptional and very talented’ Azizur Rahman heads the group, specialising in serious fraud issues and large-scale bribery and corruption affairs, whilst Niall Hearty regularly deals with the NCA, SFO, and FCA in high-profile financial fraud cases. Since joining the firm in mid-2022,  Angelika Hellweger and Zulfi Meerza have brought added experience on economic crime and regulatory matters to the firm.

Practice head(s):

Azizur Rahman


‘Niall Hearty is both client-focused and an outstanding lawyer, tactically astute and with an approachable and affable manner that makes working with him a delight.’

‘Rahman Ravelli are an exceptional firm and leaders in this field. They have a wealth of legal talent and are involved in some of the biggest cases prosecuted in the UK.’

‘Aziz Rahman is exceptional and very talented. He works tirelessly to achieve the best results for his clients.’

‘Aziz Rahman is a strong negotiator and very experienced in fraud cases. He is knowledgeable and inspires confidence in his clients.’

‘Zulfi Meerza – bright and with a great future.’

‘Aziz Rahman – a true leader and exceptionally talented white collar crime solicitor.’


Work highlights

With a market-leading presence in the City of London, bases across the UK and Europe and a worldwide network of legal experts, Rahman Ravelli is a leader in multinational and multijurisdictional serious and corporate fraud, white-collar crime, bribery and corruption, regulatory matters, complex crime, civil recovery and commercial litigation.

Rahman Ravelli has grown rapidly and provides strategic advice to corporations, governments and other organisations, senior business figures, professionals and high net worth individuals. All matters are handled directly by a partner of the firm. As a conflict-free, boutique practice offering top-tier legal services, Rahman Ravelli is regularly engaged by other law firms to provide independent advice to senior executives and to handle discrete legal matters in jurisdictions around the world.

The firm: Since it was established in 2001, the practice has built an enviable reputation in the sectors it operates in. It has earned a strong national and international presence by defending the most significant, high-profile, multi-jurisdictional and multi-agency cases robustly and effectively and by managing high-stakes commercial litigation to obtain the best possible outcome. Its caseload here and abroad grows annually.

Its recent work includes some of the largest and most high-profile global corruption investigations, deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) negotiations and cross-border investment fraud cases. It has become increasingly popular with corporates and senior executives looking to investigate and self-report wrongdoing in order to achieve a civil, rather than a criminal, solution to a problem. The firm is also utilised by corporates and high net worth individuals for its investigative and legal expertise in international and multi-jurisdictional asset tracing and recovery work.

Its heightened worldwide presence has led to a rising cross-border investigation workload. The firm is at the forefront of cases linked to investigations into the share selling practice known as Cum-Ex.

Rahman Ravelli is being increasingly called upon to advise global companies and financial institutions regarding sanctions compliance, and to act in significant, complex sanctions cases and related litigation. It is also in great demand to conduct private prosecutions for UK and international clients.

The firm is now at the cutting edge of cryptocurrency, having represented clients in a number of cases that have shaped the law in this area. Rahman Ravelli lawyers are also being sought to advise and represent major institutions in relation to environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues.

Rahman Ravelli’s track record of success, ability to recruit top-ranking lawyers, expertise and attention to detail have led to it being recommended to others by past and present clients, other law firms and professionals. Its strong, innovative and robust, proactive approach coupled with its network of worldwide experts has attracted clients from all over the world who need to resolve bribery and corruption allegations, corporate matters, tax investigations and regulatory issues. The firm is available around the clock and anywhere in the world to discuss its core specialisms of serious fraud, serious and white-collar crime, bribery and corruption and civil recovery, as well as defence against actions brought by regulatory bodies.

Types of work undertaken: The firm is known for its tenacious defence of clients’ interests in the face of attacks by governments and agencies. It regularly challenges allegations made by bodies such as the SFO, NCA, FCA and City of London Police and international organisations such as Interpol, FBI, OLAF and the SEC.

Fraud: Rahman Ravelli’s serious fraud expertise includes commercial fraud and business crime defence services, and all aspects of major tax fraud, international corruption and money laundering. SFO prosecutions are a speciality, with acquittals achieved in the UK’s largest-ever investment fraud trial and many other large-scale, high-profile cases. The firm regularly manages the most complex multinational and multijurisdictional fraud cases, including investigations involving multilateral development banks (MDBs), and the biggest investment fraud investigations conducted by the Financial Conduct Authority and HM Revenue and Customs. Rahman Ravelli is also heavily involved in investigations into the share-selling practice Cum-Ex.

Sanctions: Rahman Ravelli has represented major financial institutions, corporates and senior business figures from a wide range of business sectors in the highest-level sanctions cases and related litigation. It handles all aspects of sanctions, including challenging a sanctions regime’s targeting of an individual or organisation and making licence applications to the relevant authorities to release frozen funds or assets for designated persons or entities. Recently, the firm has been particularly busy advising companies and individuals on how sanctions imposed on Russia may affect their activities.

Regulatory: The firm’s regulatory department handles national and international cases; representing professionals and advising companies, including PLC’s, on corporate risk. Its serious crime expertise includes experience of complex, large-scale conspiracy allegations. The firm has developed specialist knowledge in tackling covert policing evidence relating to the right to privacy; including directed and intrusive surveillance, covert human intelligence sources and entrapment issues – techniques increasingly adopted by investigative bodies. The practice has experience in the fields of abuse of process and public interest immunity. Its case of R v H and C established the law in this area in the House of Lords in 2004. The case is the leading authority on disclosure and brought about a sweeping change regarding prosecution obligations on disclosure – an area where the firm excels.

Bribery/corruption: Rahman Ravelli works on bribery and corruption cases here and overseas that routinely involve billions of dollars, governments and companies of all sizes and from all industry sectors. It advises international companies regarding compliance and internal investigations. The firm’s client list includes corporates and professionals from all sectors, senior officials, high-net-worth individuals and members of the public being investigated by one or more agencies. Its caseload also sees it representing the likes of lawyers, IFA’s, accountants, surveyors and bankers, as well as those working in the health and education sectors, charities, the royal household, forex, pensions, mining and environmental schemes, motor transport and real estate. Its most recent work in this field has included extensive involvement in a number of huge, long-running investigations into major companies in the oil, gas and other natural resources sectors.

Civil recovery: Rahman Ravelli’s expertise includes national and international cases involving the NCA, SFO, HMRC, CPS and other agencies. It was the first firm to take a civil recovery case to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights to protect clients’ assets – a case that defined important civil recovery issues – and manages cases involving unexplained wealth orders.

Commercial litigation including civil fraud:  Rahman Ravelli regularly and aggressively challenges worldwide freezing orders, defends multijurisdictional actions and pursues corporate wrongdoing. The firm is adept at bringing civil fraud proceedings and conducting asset tracing and recovery actions for clients globally. Its acknowledged global asset tracing and recovery skills are repeatedly used by corporates and high net worth individuals. It is also at the forefront of cryptocurrency, having represented clients in a number of cases that have shaped the law in this area.



Department Name Email Telephone
Senior and managing partner Aziz Rahman
Corporate and financial crime Aziz Rahman
Corporate and financial crime Nicola Sharp
Corporate and financial crime Syed Rahman
Corporate and financial crime Niall Hearty
Complex crime Shaff Rahman
Asset recovery and restraint Syed Rahman
Regulatory and commercial litigation Syed Rahman
Regulatory and commercial litigation Nicola Sharp
Internal investigations and risk management Syed Rahman
Internal investigations and risk management Nicola Sharp
Internal investigations and risk management Aziz Rahman
Serious and general crime Amrik Bilkhu
Photo Name Position Profile
Niall Hearty photo Niall Hearty Niall Hearty is a legal director at Rahman Ravelli. His in-depth corporate…
Syed Rahman photo Syed Rahman Syed Rahman is a partner at Rahman Ravelli and is recognised as…
Aziz Rahman photo Mr Aziz Rahman As founder and senior partner at Rahman Ravelli, Aziz Rahman orchestrates the…
Nicola Sharp photo Nicola Sharp Nicola is a partner at Rahman Ravelli. She is known for her…
Number of UK partners : 4
Number of legal directors : 2
Number of other UK fee-earners : 15

Since its founding in 2001, Rahman Ravelli has placed great emphasis on diversity and inclusion. Both have become an ingrained part of the firm’s working practices.

Rahman Ravelli has always prided itself on the multicultural, multinational and mixed socioeconomic make-up of both its legal team and its support staff, as well as the wide age range of those who work for it. This is illustrated by the current composition of the firm’s senior legal team.

Its staff policies promote equality and cultural awareness, as it views such diversity as an asset, both for the firm and for its wide variety of current and potential clients. It also supports its lawyers’ work with representative groups.

Rahman Ravelli makes every effort to ensure every case is handled by lawyers with the best possible legal expertise and, where required, the necessary cultural and social awareness. It has undertaken a wide range of pro bono work in the community and has sponsored and given other forms of support to local charitable events.