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Kate Meakin

Of Counsel

Kate is of counsel in our award-winning Corporate Crime and Investigations practice.



Kate helps clients with corporate crime matters, including bribery and corruption, criminal and civil fraud, money laundering and sanctions.

Kate acts on internal and external investigations – including those conducted by or to meet the requirements of the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) – and advisory matters. She also brings specialist CCI experience in High Court litigation. 

Her clients include investment banks, multinational companies and individuals.

Kate works with financial and corporate clients on multi-jurisdictional investigations, including in relation to anti-corruption and fraud. She works in conjunction with Herbert Smith Freehills’ network teams in Asia, America and Europe.  

Kate leads teams on the most high-profile and high-value matters, balancing the competing risks and demands of civil litigation and criminal investigation by prosecutors and regulators in multiple jurisdictions. She represents clients at compelled interviews with the SFO and regulators.   

Kate’s experience includes:

  • advising UBS on an unauthorised trading incident in the investment bank that resulted in a loss of $2.3 billion – providing advice from the initial discovery of the incident, through internal and independent investigations, to the criminal trial and conclusion of regulatory enforcement action;
  • advising Société Générale in respect of a c. US$1.5 billion claim brought by the Libyan Investment Authority, involving allegations of corruption and intimidation;
  • representing individual employees and ex-employees in ongoing SFO investigations, following allegations of bribery and accounting irregularities at UK corporates;
  • acting for Mabey & Johnson in its internal investigation and subsequent investigation and prosecution by the SFO in respect of overseas corruption; and
  • advising the Weir Group plc in its prosecution for breach of United Nations sanctions under the Iraq Oil-for-Food programme.




Kate has a degree in law (first class honours) from Bristol University. She has worked at Herbert Smith Freehills since 2004, during which time she has spent time on secondment to a FTSE 100 company and also to the Herbert Smith Freehills Hong Kong office. 

Kate is admitted as a Solicitor in Hong Kong as well as England and Wales, and is a Solicitor Advocate, having obtained her higher rights.

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