Archives: Financial crime

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Suspicious Activity to Report? Careful how you draft as you might have to disclose what you say in confidence.

The recent High Court decision in Lonsdale v. National Westminster Bank plc [2018] EWHC 1842 (QB) serves to highlight that the content of a suspicious activity report (“SAR”) could be discloseable to an opponent in Court proceedings. Not only that – it could also form the basis of a claim in defamation.… Continue Reading

A step towards UK crypto-asset regulation? Treasury Committee Report finds current status “clearly not sustainable”

Last month, the House of Commons Treasury Committee published its report on crypto-assets. The report expresses serious concerns about the risks of consumer harm and financial crime and calls for regulation “as a matter of urgency“.… Continue Reading

Breathe easy, the SFO calls it a day in privilege battle

Last month we reported that the Court of Appeal (The Director of the SFO v Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation Limited [2018] EWCA Civ 2006) had reversed the High Court’s controversial and troubling decision from 2017 that concerned the extent to which litigation privilege could apply to documents generated in the context of internal investigations https://www.finance-disputes.co.uk/2018/09/litigation-privilege-sense-prevails-in-the-court-of-appeal/. It was announced … Continue Reading

Financial Action Task Force publishes report on professional money launderers

The Financial Task Force (FATF) has recently published a report that looks at the techniques and tools used by professional money launders (PMLs). This is the first time the FATF has undertaken a project which concentrates on PMLs that specialise in enabling criminals to evade anti-money laundering and counter terrorist financing safeguards and sanctions in … Continue Reading

FCA’s Anti-Money Laundering Report highlights focus on firms’ financial crime controls

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) published its annual Anti-Money Laundering Report on 19 July 2018, for the year ended 31 March 2018. In the report, the FCA reminded firms that due to the size and global nature of the UK financial industry, financial crime and AML remains a significant risk and is therefore one of … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Shakes-Up the Test for Criminal Dishonesty

Cheating is cheating no matter what differing standards you hold yourself to. Following the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Ivey (Appellant) v Genting Casinos (UK) Ltd t/a Crockfords (Respondent) [2017] a defendant in a fraud case can no longer rely on the argument that he thought what he was doing was acceptable. If you have been dishonest within the … Continue Reading

FOS decisions are not arbitral awards

The High Court recently considered whether a decision made by the Financial Ombudsman Service is a decision made under an arbitration agreement and so appealable under the Arbitration Act 1996. Background to the application Back in 2011 a Mr Wayne Charlton invested in a self-administered personal pension (a “SIPP”) administered by Berkeley Burke. After one … Continue Reading

Excellent turnout for the inaugural MLROs.com Northern Conference hosted by Squire Patton Boggs’ Birmingham office.

Founded in 2005 with 140 members, MLROs.com lead the way in ensuring that that financial institutions and practitioners are educated, supported and empowered to stop financial criminals. The very first MLROs.com Northern conference took place in Birmingham on Wednesday 11th October 2017, hosted by Squire Patton Boggs’ Birmingham office. The conference saw a strong turnout … Continue Reading

SFO appears safe for now after proposed merger with the National Crime Agency omitted from Queen’s Speech

The UK Government appears for the time being at least to have scrapped plans to merge the Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) with the National Crime Agency (“NCA”). The controversial proposal to abolish the SFO did not feature in the Queen’s Speech, suggesting that it has been put on the back burner following the failure of Prime Minister … Continue Reading

SFO win a reminder of the limits of privilege in internal investigations

In May the Serious Fraud Office persuaded a High Court judge to order Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation to hand over internal investigation documents it had claimed were privileged. The decision brings back into focus the vexed question of which documents produced in corporate internal investigations can be withheld in subsequent regulatory investigations and prosecutions.… Continue Reading

Squire Patton Boggs appointed to FCA/PRA Skilled Person panel

“Skilled Person” reviews under section 166 of FSMA have become a major feature of the financial services regulatory landscape in recent years. FCA figures show that 51 reports were commissioned in 2016 alone, up from 47 in 2015. Under FSMA the regulators have wide powers to require financial services firms to commission skilled person reports … Continue Reading

Financial Ombudsman makes adviser pay for failing to stop £250,000 fraud on client

The Financial Ombudsman Service has sent a clear message to financial advisers that they must be vigilant to the risk of fraud when processing transactions on behalf of their clients. In its 23 August newsletter the FOS highlighted a recent case in which an adviser was ordered to pay fraud losses that the Ombudsman considered … Continue Reading

Financial Disputes Roundtable: “Get me my money back!” Tracing the Proceeds of Fraud and Cybercrime

For the next in our breakfast roundtable series, Laurence Winston and I will be joined by intelligence and investigations specialists James Stothard and Damian Ozenbrook of Blue Square Global to look at tracing and recovering stolen assets. Following on from our well-received recent roundtable session on how to react to a cyber-theft or fraud, we … Continue Reading

Upper Tribunal refuses to stay regulatory proceedings pending a criminal trial

Background The Upper Tribunal (Tax and Chancery Chamber) hears references from decisions and supervisory notices issued by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”) and other specified regulators. In this case three references were made by two former employees of Deutsche Bank (Messrs Bittar and Vogt) and a former Barclays Bank employee (Mr Moryoussef). The references related … Continue Reading

Bankers’ references – Court of Appeal clarifies when a duty of care exists

The Court of Appeal’s decision in Playboy Club London limited & Ors v Banca Nazionale Del Lavoro Spa will be welcomed by banks that provide financial references in relation to their customers. It provides useful guidance to follow when providing or requesting references: Banks should draft references carefully and consider limiting liability to specific recipients … Continue Reading

A call for views – responses to the Government’s Action plan on money laundering and terrorist funding due by 2 June 2016

On 21 April 2016, HM Treasury and the Home Office published the government’s “Action Plan” on the prevention of money laundering and the funding of terrorism.   The Action Plan is designed to help businesses to help the UK in the fight against money laundering and financing terrorism – an issue which is becoming all too … Continue Reading
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