Corporate fraud and asset recovery

  • BSkyB: advising on its successful claims against EDS (now part of Hewlett Packard) for deceit, negligent misrepresentation and breach of contract arising out of the installation of a new customer relationship management system. The contract claim was capped at £30 million, but our success in proving fraud meant that BSkyB was awarded £318 million, and this success was recognised with the award of ‘Litigation Team of the Year’ at each of The Lawyer Awards 2010, The Legal Week Awards 2010, and the Legal Business Awards 2011
  • Parex Banka: advising the Latvian state-owned bank in relation to an investigation into the allegedly fraudulent practices of former shareholders and management, leading to the largest civil claims against an individual in Latvian legal history
  • Corporacion Nacional de Cobre de Chile (Codelco) and the Government of Chile: advising in relation to unauthorised speculative copper and bullion futures trading on the London and New York Metal Exchanges which resulted in losses to Codelco of over US$175 million. In the course of the investigation, evidence emerged of bribery on the part of several metals traders, which spawned a series of legal proceedings, including three High Court legal actions and a variety of asset freezing and disclosure orders in offshore jurisdictions
  • BT Financial Group: advising in relation to the recovery of investor funds from two Australian managed investment schemes holding redeemable shares in Cayman Island mutual fund companies which invested in securities exposed to US subprime mortgages
  • J.P. Morgan: defending against claims of knowing involvement in a case where an employee defrauded his employer by means of cheques drawn on the employer's account, the proceeds of which were deposited into the employee's private future trading account
  • Onexim Group (a holding company of Mikhail Prokhorov): advising in numerous multi-jurisdiction proceedings related to the split of assets worth US$15 billion jointly held with Interros Group (the holding company of Vladimir Potanin), including successfully applying for peremptory injunctive relief in Cyprus and BVI
  • The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC): advising in relation to long-running proceedings in the Isle of Man to recover the proceeds of a massive securities fraud involving AremisSoft corporation, a company formerly listed on the NASDAQ. After some three years of hard-fought litigation the matter culminated in the repatriation to the United States of approximately US$200 million—the largest ever such recovery by the SEC
  • Rabobank: advising in proceedings brought by Royal Bank of Canada in the High Court, arising out of a complex structured finance transaction involving Enron Corporation, affiliates of Enron and special purpose entities
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers: advising in relation to the global multi-million dollar litigation surrounding the collapse of BCCI and advising in relation to the settlement of the action. The claim made by the liquidators was the largest piece of litigation ever brought in the English courts
  • Coopers & Lybrand (Singapore): advising in connection with the litigation brought against them as the auditors of the Barings Group following its collapse, which resulted from rogue trader Nick Leeson’s unauthorised trading
  • Arthur Andersen: advising on claims made against them in connection with the collapse of the Bond Group in Australia with debts of around A$3 billion
  • investors in the collapsed BVI Incorporated Hedge Fund, Manhattan Investment Fund: advising in respect of a variety of cross-border claims and related insolvency issues arising from alleged management fraud
  • First Investments Limited: advising in relation to proceedings against the Trust Company of the West, an investment adviser, in relation to negligence/fraudulent security advice given in connection with a mortgage-backed securities fund
  • The Hong Kong Independent Commission Against Corruption and the Attorney General: advising in respect of the successful investigation and prosecution of Warwick Reid, a senior government lawyer, and several private sector lawyers who paid bribes to him. In conjunction with this, the firm also represented the Attorney General of Hong Kong in a very substantial international asset tracing exercise which was successful in recovering Reid's corrupt gains. Attorney General of Hong Kong v Reid has been one of the leading authorities in the civil law of bribery throughout jurisdictions based on English law
  • Powerscreen International plc: advising in connection with the legal implications of the announcement of accounting irregularities discovered at one of its subsidiaries, Matbro, including Serious Fraud Office and London Stock Exchange investigations and possible legal proceedings
  • the Hong Kong branch of a major international bank: advising in bringing claims against third parties for breach of fiduciary duty, fraud, knowing receipt and knowing assistance, arising out of several fraudulent international sale transactions covered by a number of fraudulently procured letters of credit
  • various trustees: advising trustees in Jersey and Grand Cayman who had received what was said to be proceeds of fraud of a major public fraud, and advising upon steps to be taken in light of claims made in litigation or otherwise in England by numerous claimants including seeking court directions and negotiations with trustees in other jurisdictions who had received other alleged proceeds
  • acting in a major claim relating to the use of bank accounts for a high-yield investment fraud including multiple search orders, worldwide freezing orders, orders for the delivery up of defendants' passports, orders for the repatriation of the proceeds of the fraud and proceedings in the United States and various offshore jurisdictions
  • obtaining and executing search orders, freezing orders and passport seizure and Norwich Pharmacal relief in relation to a claim against an individual running a fictitious offshore banking operation also used for money laundering opportunities
  • Chase Manhattan Bank: advising in relation to litigation with the bank’s customers who were names at Lloyd’s in relation to allegations of fraud by the names in the Lloyd’s insurance market (and in respect of several other matters)
  • Motion Picture Association and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry member companies: advising in the largest seizure of pirate optical discs and production machinery in Hong Kong
  • a major Australian financial institution: advising regarding recovery of funds from an alleged scheme by a customer, known as 'cheque kiting', where a series of valueless cheques were deposited and drawn upon (the subsequent dishonour of the cheques being masked by the deposit of further valueless cheques for an equal or greater amount), ultimately resulting in a debit balance of the customer's account of approximately A$9.3 million after the alleged scheme was discovered
  • a corporate trustee in court proceedings in respect of allegations of breach of trust and statutory duties, and representation in a related investigation by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission
  • a corporate trustee: representing in an investigation by the Australian corporations and securities regulator, ASIC, in relation to alleged fraudulent conduct