Rahman Ravelli > Halifax, England > Firm Profile

Rahman Ravelli

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

Rahman Ravelli, a firm equipped to support on local, national and multijurisdictional proceedings, is home to extensive experience in fraud, white-collar and corporate crime, money laundering and tax evasion. Managing partner Aziz Rahman is a go-to for international bribery and corruption issues and is supported by Nicola Sharp, an acclaimed name for financial investigations, money laundering and cross-border investment fraud. Syed Rahman is a further standout and has developed prominent expertise in a number of emerging areas, including SPAC-related matters and cryptocurrency fraud.

Practice head(s):

Aziz Rahman

Other key lawyers:


‘Aziz Rahman is simply top drawer. He runs an impressive practice whilst retaining the ‘human touch’. I have observed the development of his practice over many years from humble beginnings in Yorkshire to a significant presence nationally and internationally. Hats off to him!’

‘I regularly recommend the firm as a whole as I know that everyone is first-rate.’

‘Aziz and Syed Rahman are first-rate.’

‘Syed and Aziz Rahman are two of the most well-respected names in the business. The team is compact, but entirely focussed on delivering results for their clients – there are firms with more staff, there are firms with more offices, but size is nothing without leadership, and Aziz has that is spades.’

‘The driving force behind the firm is the senior partner, Aziz Rahman. His passion for the work he does has led to the rapid and successful expansion of the firm. He is the person who draws the clients in and who keeps them.’

‘Syedur Rahman is a partner at the firm who has taken incredible steps in the last few years to attract international clients. His enthusiasm for the work he does is infectious.’

‘Nicola Sharp – top rated lawyer. Clients love her ability to explain complex legal issues simply. Very hard working and respected.’

‘Nicola Sharp as hard as nails and tenacious. A great litigator.’

Work highlights

    Crime, fraud and licensing > Fraud: white-collar crime (advice to individuals) Tier 4

    Rahman Ravelli is a nationwide firm with an international reach in white-collar criminal defence proceedings, representing a global range of individual clients facing allegations of financial crime, bribery and corruption, and serious fraud. The firm is engaged in a range of proceedings worldwide, offering on-the-ground European and US expertise, as well as acting in Africa and Asia-domiciled proceedings, and representing defendants in major SFO, FCA, and HMRC prosecutions in the UK. The ‘fantasticAzizur Rahman heads up the team, taking the lead on an array of high-profile and sensitive cases, while the ‘outstandingNiall Hearty was promoted to partner in May 2022. Counsel Salomé Lemasson divides her time between London, Paris, and Berlin, heading up the firm’s EU-wide business crime offering and contributing heavily to the firm’s cross-border expertise.

    Practice head(s):

    Azizur Rahman

    Other key lawyers:

    Niall Hearty; Syedur Rahman; Nicola Sharp; Salomé Lemasson


    ‘Good firm with a growing reputation. Extremely ambitious in the sector and with a great level of skill and knowledge’

    ‘Niall Hearty an excellent lawyer with real skill both inter-personally in client facing and also in his careful and considered preparation of cases. He works for clients rather than the firm!’

    ‘I have worked with this firm on both defence cases and recently on a private prosecution, They are extremely professional and are accustomed to dealing with large scale cases. Their infrastructure is well used to dealing with such cases.’

    ‘Niall Hearty – rock solid performer – great with clients and a real hard worker.’

    ‘I know a number of the lawyers at Rahman Ravelli, they are all hard working and all client focused and provide an outstanding service.’

    ‘Aziz Rahman is the managing partner and he has a fantastic ability to be able to soak up vast quantities of detailed dense information is a short period of time – very impressive.’

    Niall Hearty is another outstanding lawyer who clients love as he is calm and reassuring and is a solutions man not a problems man.

    ‘Syedur Rahman’s ability to be able to get to grips with volumes of detailed information always impresses me and I am always glad he is on my side inside, instead of the other guy’s side!’

    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.



    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
    Niall Hearty photo Niall HeartyNiall Hearty is a legal director at Rahman Ravelli. His in-depth corporate…
    Syed Rahman photo Syed RahmanSyed Rahman is a partner at Rahman Ravelli and is recognised as…
    Aziz Rahman photoMr Aziz RahmanAs founder and senior partner at Rahman Ravelli, Aziz Rahman orchestrates the…
    Nicola Sharp photo Nicola SharpNicola 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.

    Trading Abroad And Money Laundering Risks

    Aziz Rahman explains what those trading internationally need to do to ensure they are not targeted by money launderers.

    The Future For Corporate Liability

    With the government looking at how to change the law when it comes to prosecuting companies, Aziz Rahman considers the possibilities.

    Money Laundering Obligations And Property Professionals

    With the housing market facing further scrutiny regarding money laundering, Aziz Rahman outlines what those working in the property sector must do to stay within the law.

    The Rolls-royce Dpa – Lessons That Can Be Learnt

    Aziz Rahman outlines the lessons that corporates and senior executives under investigation can learn from the huge Rolls-Royce bribery settlement.

    Tackling Business Crime In Your Workplace

    Failure to prevent fraud and other business crime can prove costly to companies. Ben Ticehurst and Aziz Rahman consider what can be done to identify wrongdoing and the options available when it is found.

    Defending Sfo Accusations

    Aziz Rahman explains how the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) builds a case – and how it can be challenged.

    The Jp Morgan Scandal And The Definition Of Bribery

    JP Morgan is paying $264M to settle allegations of bribery over its hiring of children of key Chinese decision makers to try and secure business. Aziz Rahman explains what constitutes bribery and how to prevent it.

    Lengthy Sfo Investigations

    Aziz Rahman considers whether SFO investigations could be concluded quicker.

    Preventing Fraud And Money Laundering

    The government wants corporate executives charged when their staff carry out offences such as fraud and money laundering. How can you make sure you’re not one of those prosecuted?

    Pensions and the risk of fraud

    What those working in pensions must do to avoid being a victim of fraud – or being accused of it.

    Why Those In Finance Must Tackle Money Laundering

    With the authorities looking for more ways of tackling money laundering, Aziz Rahman explains why those working in finance must stop it for themselves.

    Bitter Pill

    Aziz Rahman explains why the latest pharmaceutical bribery scandal emphasises the need for companies to have a strong compliance policy.

    No Avoiding It

    Accountants and advisors could face tougher fines for helping clients avoid paying tax. So how can they make sure they do not fall foul of the law?


    Aziz Rahman examines some of the issues involved before, during and after a company collapses.

    Damage Limitation

    Putting right the wrongs and minimising the damage when your company is accused of business crime.