Claudia Culley

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Managing emerging bribery risks for financial institutions

Despite financial institutions in the UK and many other jurisdictions being required to have in place sophisticated bribery and corruption (ABC) systems and controls, there has been a recent increase in the number of major ABC enforcement actions involving financial institutions, as well as a significant uptick in civil disputes alleging bribery. Looking ahead, as … Continue Reading

The Corporate Criminal Liability Options Paper

Following an 18-month consultation process, on 10 June 2022, the UK Law Commission published a lengthy options paper (here with a summary here) for the UK Government on how it can improve the law to ensure that corporates are effectively held to account for committing serious crimes (the Options Paper). This article sets out the … Continue Reading

Transparency International Report provides guidance on implementing a values-based ABC compliance programme

Transparency International has published its 2022 Values Added Report, which provides useful pointers on the practical steps companies can take to enhance their ABC frameworks by incorporating a values-based approach. The Report’s recommendations are consistent with the broader shift away from a purely rules-based compliance approach, towards a model in which employees are empowered to … Continue Reading

New SFO Investigation into Arena Television Limited

On Wednesday 23 February, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), in conjunction with the National Crime Agency (NCA), conducted a ‘dawn raid’ culminating in two arrests and searches of three properties as part of its criminal investigation into the collapsed broadcaster, Arena Television Limited (Arena). The investigation centres on questions raised by administrators regarding the validity … Continue Reading

UK financial crime enforcement: what lies ahead in 2022?

2021 was an extraordinary year in financial crime. In this blog we consider recent UK developments, the key issues emerging in 2022 and the practical implications for companies. Taking a step back from these developments, we see four key overarching themes: An increased focus from authorities on the effectiveness of preventative systems and controls when … Continue Reading

Top practical tips on the preservation, collection and review of mobile data in investigations.

Remote working has accelerated the merger of work and private data, particularly on mobile phones and instant messaging services such as WhatsApp. While employees are performing their jobs, mobile access may be putting their employers at risk – because work-related communications on unapproved platforms are frequently not preserved in accordance with regulatory requirements (where applicable), … Continue Reading

Mobile data and investigations

Remote working has accelerated the merger of work and private data, particularly on mobile phones and instant messaging services such as WhatsApp. While employees are performing their jobs, mobile access may be putting their employers at risk – because work-related communications on unapproved platforms are frequently not preserved in accordance with regulatory requirements (where applicable), … Continue Reading

SFO publishes Serco Statement of Facts

On 28 April 2021, the SFO published the statement of facts relating to the DPA that it agreed with Serco Geografix Limited (SGL) back in July 2019. The publication was made possible as a result of the ending of the trial of two former Serco directors, which collapsed this week as a result of issues … Continue Reading

The trial of SFO’s case against former Serco executives collapses

The prosecution of two former Serco executives by the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) collapsed earlier today after failures in the SFO’s disclosure process. The SFO applied to adjourn the trial – which began on 30 March – in order to resolve those issues, but the application was refused and the jury was directed to … Continue Reading

ABC Risk assessments: FAQs

Last month we hosted a webinar on anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) risk assessments. This was the first in our series of ABC compliance webinars marking the 10th Anniversary of the UK Bribery Act coming into force. You can listen to the audio recording of the webinar on-demand here. We have put together a selection of … Continue Reading

Risk assessments and the expectations of global authorities – what this means for businesses

On 18 March 2021, we will be holding the first of our global webinars on putting into practice authorities’ expectations in relation to each of the components of an ABC programme. In this first session we will examine global expectations in relation to risk assessments – the starting point of an effective ABC programme. We … Continue Reading

Pension Schemes Act 2021: Increased potential for criminal liability and how companies can mitigate this risk

The Pension Schemes Act 2021 (the Act) has introduced broad new criminal offences going far beyond the ‘reckless’ and ‘unscrupulous’ behaviour which the offences were originally envisaged to deter[1]. Whilst the Pensions Regulator (TPR) has today released a draft policy on how it will use its new criminal sanction powers (the TPR policy), some uncertainty … Continue Reading

Conducting an ABC risk assessment: 4 key steps

Anti-bribery and corruption (ABC) risk assessments are the cornerstone of an effective compliance programme, ensuring that compliance resources are focused on the most significant ABC risks faced by the business. A genuinely risk-based compliance programme helps to achieve both the primary objective of a compliance programme (preventing ABC issues occurring), the secondary objective (providing a … Continue Reading

UK Supreme Court overturns controversial decision on extraterritorial effect of Section 2 Notices

Today, 5 February 2021, the UK Supreme Court has handed down the long-awaited judgment on the extra-territoriality of the Serious Fraud Office’s powers to obtain documents. The Supreme Court held that Section 2 Notices do not have extra-territorial effect against a foreign company that does not carry on business in the UK. (R (on the … Continue Reading

SFO Guidance on Deferred Prosecution Agreements: what’s new?

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) last Friday published its first specific guidance on DPAs (the Guidance). Lisa Osofsky, Director of the Serious Fraud Office, said that ‘publishing this guidance will provide further transparency on what we expect from companies looking to co-operate with us’. Inevitably, the new Guidance remains high-level with little detail on the … Continue Reading

SFO publishes a chapter from its handbook offering guidance on DPAs

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) on Friday published a chapter from its handbook, which offers “comprehensive guidance” on Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs). This is the first set of guidance specific to the SFO, and sets out how the agency will approach its use of DPAs and engage with companies where a DPA “is a prospective … Continue Reading

SFO receives approval for DPA with G4S Care & Justice (UK) Limited

The UK’s eighth deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) has been approved in relation to the UK Serious Fraud Office’s (SFO) investigation into G4S Care & Justice (UK) Ltd (G4S). The SFO’s investigation into G4S began in 2013 in relation to G4S’s provision of electronic monitoring services for the Ministry of Justice (MoJ)  between 2005 and 2013, … Continue Reading

Ghosh laid to rest: Court of Appeal confirms that the objective test for dishonesty applies in criminal law, rather than the problematic Ghosh test

 On 30 April 2020, the Court of Appeal handed down a judgment confirming that the test for dishonesty in criminal law is that set out by the Supreme Court in Ivey v Genting Casinos, as opposed to the much criticised Ghosh test. In practical terms, this decision means that it should prove easier to prove … Continue Reading
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