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NOV
29

More acquittals for Lewis Nedas Law criminal and fraud specialist lawyers

  1. super lawyer comicRape acquittal – At Woolwich Crown Court our client WT was acquitted by the jury after little more than 1 hour of deliberation. The complainant, a relative of WT, alleged that he had raped her at his flat after a family BBQ. Her complaint though was undermined by evidence gathered by the defence which included statements and photographs which showed that she continued to fraternise and socialise with WT in the weeks after the alleged rape. This case was diligently and thoroughly prepared by Tony Meisels of this firm and the advocate was Tara McCarthy of Thomas More Chambers;

  2. Acquittal at the Central Criminal Court for our client facing a kidnapping trial. Miles Herman represented a young man of good character, who along with other co-defendants was accused of kidnapping a schoolboy (whom they had alleged was involved in a bank fraud and stolen credit cards). Monies from this fraud were in turn stolen by the alleged victim’s Father. The CPS alleged that the victim was kidnapped in return for the repayment of those stolen funds. Our client who was of good character, and a university student was adamant that he was not involved in the allegation from the outset. As a result of Miles's diligent and thorough preparation, and an incisive half time submission made by our very own excellent Danny Barnard (barrister) that there wasn't a case for our client to answer, he was discharged from the trial. The client was absolutely delighted;

  3. Siobhain Egan represented a senior executive in the Insurance industry who was investigated for fraud. As a result of thorough investigation and strong representations, the investigation was dropped. The client worked in a FCA regulated sector and company and would have lost his job immediately had he been prosecuted.

 

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NOV
18

More acquittals and successful results for Lewis Nedas Law criminal and fraud lawyers

  1. fraudUnan Choudhury represented an individual who was initially facing a large scale conspiracy to defraud prosecution. Unan successfully represented to the CPS that there was not a case for his client to answer and insufficient evidence to allow the case to go to the jury. The CPS agreed with Unan's assessment, a week before trial! They then substituted a charge of money laundering, as a small amount of the alleged proceeds of crime passed through his account. Our client agreed to plead guilty to this and was sentenced to 40 hours 'work in the community order' - his numerous co-defendants were convicted and sentenced to lengthy periods of imprisonment for the overarching allegation of fraud.

  2. Siobhain Egan represented a professional man accused of assaulting his children's tutor in his own home, and in front of his children. Our client, a man of good character, staunchly denied the offence, and we set about investigating and preparing his case. It was rapidly apparent that there was simply no information about the alleged victim, his apparent doctorate or qualifications anywhere! We also learned that he admitted use of class A drugs and that there had been allegations of his aggressive behaviour in the past. Rather unusually, we made an application to admit this evidence as 'bad character' against the alleged victim.The CPS were very uncooperative about this application and our persistent requests for disclosure in the case, reluctantly serving important information on the day of trial which required further investigation. Our client was represented by the excellent and tenacious barrister Rishi Nathwani, and was acquitted to his absolute delight and relief. The court made a defence costs in his favour.

  3. Siobhain also represented a City analyst investigated for fraud, as a result of strong representations made to the investigating authority, the prosecution was dropped. Had he been prosecuted he would have lost his Job and specialist professional status.

These are just some examples of the detailed, painstaking, assertive and very successful defence preparation and representation which we offer to our clients.

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NOV
18

8 Out of 10 UK Managers Operating Overseas Forced to use Bribery

A 12-year study has found that over 85% of UK managers operating abroad in emerging markets are involved with bribery on a monthly basis.

The study, carried out by Henley Business School, also found that 80% of board level executives are aware of the practice, but that very little can be done to stop it. The inquiry was carried out over a 12 year period, beginning in 2004, and is based on private “intimate” conversations with the executives, ranging from general managers to chief executives, of more than 1000 businesses operating internationally, of which more than 10% were UK based.

Struggling to Combat Bribery

According to Andrew Kakabadse, professor of governance and leadership at Henley Business School, the report originally began as an exercise to help coach and support high-level business individuals struggling with aspects of their employment. “However,” he added, “it quickly became apparent that a key obstacle was dealing with everyday fraud, bribery and corruption.”

The study has drawn from research in Australia, Belgium, China, Finland, Georgia, Germany, India, Ireland, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, and Sweden. It also found that bribery was costing the organisations in question some 5% of their annual revenue on average.

The report noted that bribery was so institutionalised in some markets that it had been informed of instances where agents would try and ‘out-bid’ each other by asking for lower bribes – usually a percentage of the contract’s value and often up to 10% – to ensure a company would engage them over competitors.

Mr Kakabadse stated that while the stiff penalties contained in laws like the UK’s Bribery Act and the US’s Foreign Corrupt Practices Act “bring fear to boards”, they have also created a class of “fall guys”.

“Many boards are following the act but know bribery is a fact of life lower down the company, the people on the ground,” he added. “It is the managing directors and general managers in country… who are being forced to give bribes to win business. These are good people being forced to do bad things. Boards are doing worse than paying lip service to anti-corruption laws because they are using them to protect themselves while they know bribery is going on.”

The study found no specific sector or area which was particularly susceptible or likely to indulge in bribery and Mr Kakabadse expressed surprise that only 85% of managers had admitted to using bribes. These findings stand in sharp contrast to PwC’s recent global economic crime survey which found that 18% of senior management was involved in crime, including accounting fraud, while 80% of senior executives admitted to having seen such corrupt practices.

Mr Kakabadse reported that many of the managers in question felt that bribery was the only option if they wished to remain competitive in these emerging markets, with the only other option being to withdraw from the market completely. In other words, “if they didn’t pay-up to achieve their organisation’s objectives, then their competitors certainly would.” Working in foreign markets naturally means adopting local practices, and when that country or market is deeply corrupt, the only alternative to corrupt business is no business. It is therefore somewhat unsurprising that many companies have chosen to turn a blind eye, giving tacit permission to their subordinates. Commenting on the report, Michael Littlechild, director of GoodCorporation, the anti-corruption and business ethics advisor, observed that it starkly illuminates the difficulties faced by companies operating in emerging markets. He added: “Many large international organisations give explicit instructions to staff to refuse bribes and some have pulled out of countries where the risk is too great (…) Those that have ignored the law have faced huge fines.”

Severe Penalties

If any of these “fall guys” or the companies who employ them are found guilty of an offence under the Bribery Act 2010 the consequences can be severe. Section 11 of the Act provides for a potentially unlimited fine and up to ten year’s imprisonment for individuals found guilty of serious bribery offences and a similarly unlimited fine for any company or partnership who fail to prevent such bribery from happening.

A criminal conviction also triggers the power to impose a confiscation order under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002. This order will almost always be applied for after a conviction unless there are compelling reasons not to do so. It is designed to prevent offenders from benefitting from the crime they have committed and forces those convicted of an offence to pay a sum of money equal to the ‘benefit’ they received as a result of the bribe.

If the defendant cannot be brought to trial, has been acquitted, or where there is insufficient evidence to obtain a criminal conviction, a Civil Recovery Order can be applied for. Being a civil claim, the agency bringing the claim (for bribery the Serious Fraud Office) need only establish criminal activity and that the funds it is seeking to recover are the proceeds of that crime. This is a lower standard of proof than in a criminal case. There are clear advantages to using this procedure for both parties as, if they settle (which they typically do), the resulting settlement will be confidential and will not result in a criminal conviction.

It seems likely that the companies in question see the possibility of such measures as par for the course and a worthy price to pay for the opportunity of working in these emerging markets. It also seems to demonstrate an almost foolhardy faith in not getting caught, or in being able to lay the blame squarely at the door of a subordinate and walk away scot free.

Lewis Nedas Financial Crime Lawyers, London

Lewis Nedas Law are London-based solicitors, frequently rated in both Chambers UK and The Legal 500. With over 30 years’ experience as specialist solicitors in central London, UK, we can help you or your business today. on 020 7387 2032 Please contact Jeffrey Lewis or Siobhain Egan on 020 7387 2032 or contact us online.

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743 Hits
NOV
16

John Alford interviewed by French TV Channel 6

mazer mahmoodThe actor John Alford and his solicitor Siobhain Egan were both filmed and interviewed by French TV channel 6, for their current affairs program 66 Minutes, about the activities (and conviction) of Mazer Mahmood aka 'The Fake Sheikh'.

 

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779 Hits
NOV
15

New instructions for Lewis Nedas Law specialist criminal and fraud defence solicitors

  1. cuffsLeila Abdul-Rasool has been instructed in an insurance fraud (and related money laundering matters) to the value of £500,000;

  2. Siobhain Egan has been instructed in the following matters:

    a) two more individuals seeking to overturn their convictions sustained as a result of sting entrapments by the 'Fake Sheikh' Mazer Mahmood;
    b) a professional man facing allegations of pharmaceutical fraud;
    c) a finance professional accused of fraud;
    d) two senior finance professionals acting as NED's, facing investigation by HMRC and the FCA re regulatory and professional disciplinary issues.

  3. Miles Herman is acting for:

    a) a client facing investigation into money laundering to the value of £1.5million (cross border transactions);
    b) a senior finance professional accused of illegal pornography offences.

  4. Jeffrey Lewis instructed again by a client in another complex tax evasion allegation.

 

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