Corporate Crime update – Winter 2020

Welcome to the Winter 2020 edition of our corporate crime update - our round up of developments in relation to corruption, money laundering, fraud, sanctions and related matters. Our update now covers a number of jurisdictions. Read more

No change to the FCA’s approach to enforcement and penalties

On 12 February, the FCA’s Executive Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight, Mark Steward, delivered the keynote address at the City & Financial Global Investigations and Enforcement Conference in London. This latest speech focused more broadly on the FCA’s approach to enforcement. In this article, we explore the implications for firms of some of the key messages of the speech. Read more

SFO Internal Guidance on Evaluating a Compliance Programme

On 17 January 2020 the UK Serious Fraud Office (“SFO“) updated its Operational Handbook to include a new chapter on evaluating a compliance programme (the "New Chapter"). The New Chapter considers the relevance of compliance programmes for SFO cases and how the SFO will investigate the effectiveness of a compliance programme. The SFO's Operational Handbook is for internal SFO guidance, does not constitute official guidance to third parties and is published in the interests of transparency. However, it can be instructive in revealing the SFO’s approach to certain matters. In this briefing we provide an overview of the New Chapter. Read more

Happy New Year – Happy New Money Laundering Regulations

On 20 December 2019, we received a festive treat: the publication of the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) Regulations 2019 (the "Regulations").  The Regulations, which will come into force on 10 January 2020, implement the Fifth EU Money Laundering Directive (Directive (EU) 2018/843, "5MLD")) in the UK, and follow a high level consultation in summer 2019. In this briefing we review the changes and new obligations. Read more

FCA warns CEOs to tackle non-financial misconduct

The FCA has warned CEOs that how a firm handles non-financial misconduct is indicative of a firm's culture. It is the FCA's view that embedding healthy cultures includes, therefore, taking steps to address the discrimination, harassment and bullying that remains "prevalent" in firms. In a 'Dear CEO' letter (the Letter), which follows recent incidents in the wholesale general insurance sector, the FCA considers the need for fundamental change in firms' culture and calls on leaders to bring about that change. Read more

SFO secures sixth DPA

On 20 December 2019 reporting restrictions were lifted in respect of a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (“DPA”) agreed between the Serious Fraud Office ("SFO") and Guralp Systems Ltd (“GSL”). Under the DPA, which was approved in October 2019, GSL agreed to disgorge relevant profit of £2,069,861 in relation to charges of conspiracy to make corrupt payments and failure to prevent bribery by its employees, both in respect of South Korean business. Three GSL personnel, who were also charged with conspiracy to make corrupt payments, were subsequently acquitted in December. GSL also agreed to continue to cooperate with the SFO and to maintain and keep its (already enhanced) Anti-Bribery and Corruption ("ABC") procedures under review. Read more