Blog

May 2, 2018 Supreme Court extends scope of Freezing Orders through the tort of conspiracy Introduction The Supreme Court has recently issued a landmark decision in the long running litigation involving Mr Mukhtar Ablyazov. In JSC BTA Bank v Khrapunov [2018] UKSC 19, the Supreme Court clarified the law in relation to unlawful means conspiracy and provided some useful guidance on what constitutes an “unlawful means”. This decision also impacts the scope and effect of Freezing Orders obtained by claimants. Facts Mr Ablyazov was the former chairman and controlling shareholder of JSC BTA Bank and was removed from office when the Bank was nationalised in 2009. He ... Read More
Apr 18, 2018 Confiscation Orders and the Impact of Part Payment on Default Sentences A recent decision has clarified the position in respect of the calculation of reductions for default sentences when Confiscation Orders are not settled within the prescribed timeframe. Ilana Baines considers the impact of the Supreme Court ruling in R (on the application of Gibson) v Secretary of State for Justice [2018] UKSC 2 The proceedings concerned the enforcement of confiscation orders made by the Crown Court upon conviction. Almost 20 years ago the appellant was convicted of a drug trafficking offence and was sentenced to 25 years’ imprisonment. At a Confiscation hearing a year ... Read More
Apr 13, 2018 Court of Appeal on litigation privilege – defendant’s statement provided to company solicitors admissible On 25 January 2018 the Court of Appeal Criminal Division in R v Jukes [2018] EWCA Crim 176 dealt with the question when a criminal prosecution can be said to be in reasonable contemplation. In the case of R v Jukes it mattered for the decision whether a statement provided by the appellant in the case was admissible in evidence or not. The facts were as follows. The appellant was the transport and operations manager of a waste and recycling company based in Bootle. A baling machine was used to compress paper and cardboard into bales. The baling machine was situated in a so-called compaction ... Read More
Apr 4, 2018 CPS Disclosure Failings – What Next? In recent months CPS disclosure failings have sparked the interest of the nation, not just criminal lawyers. Such interest is understandable, as the criminal justice system has the potential to impact any individual. It needs to be a system in which there are assurances that cases are brought justly and in accordance with the clear guidance. One key element is disclosure. At the outset, the focus was on the collapse of two rape cases, in which crucial relevant material had not been disclosed. This led to a joint review by the CPS and the Metropolitan Police Service of the disclosure process ... Read More
Mar 15, 2018 French DPA – Franco-Anglo-American Comparison On the 14 November 2017, the Cour D’Appel de Paris approved a Convention Judiciaire d’Intérêt Public (“CJIP”) between the French National Financial Prosecutor, Parquet National Financier (“PNF”) and HSBC Private Bank (Suisse). This agreement is the first CJIP entered into by the French authorities since the “Law regarding transparency, the fight against corruption and the modernization of economic life” (better known as the “Loi Sapin II”) was passed in December 2016. The investigation revealed that between 2006 and ... Read More
Mar 8, 2018 The long arm of the law The long arm of the law  - February 2018 Written for the Business Insider by Marleen Bouwer     About Marleen Marleen is a lawyer in the criminal and regulatory team with experience in defending a variety of fraud and white collar crime matters. She represents clients both pre and post charge in relation to investigations of money laundering, corruption, insider dealing and (tax) fraud. In addition, she represents clients facing extradition and is familiar with mutual legal assistance requests. She has previous experience in commercial/insurance litigation. Marleen is a ... Read More
Mar 6, 2018 Let them eat humble pie: Barclays Bank Plc in the dock Charges against Barclays Bank Plc were laid in February 2018 extending the ambit of the SFO Prosecution which had already charged the parent company (Barclays Plc) and four senior executives for conspiracy to commit fraud and providing unlawful financial assistance during a capital raising. Crucially, the charges against the operational arm of the British banking behemoth could now endanger its licence to provide banking services. The charges broke new ground in many respects not least because, as many in the financial press have observed, they are the first real major criminal prosecutions ... Read More
Mar 6, 2018 Application for a Post-Judgment Freezing Order: The Risk of Dissipation Introduction   Freezing orders are sometimes described as the English Court’s “nuclear weapons”. They are often very effective in preserving assets that can then be used to satisfy a judgment debt. However, they are also onerous, invasive, can cause damage to reputation and massive disruption to a business or individual. The Court does not therefore grant them lightly.   In relation to post-judgment freezing orders, just because a defendant has not paid a judgment does not mean a claimant has an automatic right to get a freezing order against that ... Read More
Mar 2, 2018 Supreme Court ruling: No ‘special rules’ for litigants in person Litigants in person are on the increase, and given the growing costs of litigation this is no surprise. The recent Supreme Court decision in Barton v Wright Hassall LLP [2018] UKSC 12 has confirmed that the CPR does not just apply to those parties represented by lawyers, and being a litigant in person is no excuse for failing to comply with the rules.   On the last day before the Claim Form expired, Mr Barton emailed his Claim Form to Berrymans Lace Mawer, solicitors for Wright Hassall LLP. Berrymans did not accept service by email and asserted that the Claim Form had expired unserved ... Read More
Feb 15, 2018 Unexplained Wealth Orders The Criminal Finances Act 2017 introduced significant changes to the existing laws dealing with money laundering and asset recovery under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (‘POCA 2002’).  Since its inception, it has created the new corporate offences of failure to prevent the facilitation of tax evasion and a key element of the Act is the introduction of Unexplained Wealth Orders (‘UWOs’) which came into force on 31 January 2018. Whilst existing legislations dealing with proceeds of crime has largely been domestic in its focus, the introduction of UWOs moves towards ... Read More