When something goes wrong at a corporate, a government entity, an international organisation or a non-profit, the first priority is to establish the facts – quickly, independently, and confidentially. A failure to do so is frequently the cause of multiple expensive, time-consuming and embarrassing problems. In contrast, getting this right at an early stage can often nip a problem in the bud – be it a matter of internal misconduct, civil liability, sanctionable practices or potential criminal offences – and offer opportunities for rapid and cost-effective resolution. A well-conducted investigation is the best defence against a continued drain on management time and attention.

Outer Temple’s Business Crime and Regulation team has undertaken investigations into all these kinds of problems for enterprises and organisations of all sizes, both domestic and international. The team’s members have advised banks and financial services firms, multilateral institutions including UN-specialised agencies, charities and public agencies about issues ranging from allegations of fraud and international corruption to questions of discrimination and internal misconduct. Some of the team have served in senior investigative and compliance roles in large corporates, overseeing multi-jurisdiction internal investigations and advising senior management on their legal and regulatory implications. Others have extensive experience with law enforcement and regulators in intelligence, investigation and prosecution.

Internal investigations often cross over into areas of regulatory and criminal liability, and touch on employment and discrimination concerns as well. Because of this, the team’s expertise in dealing with the SFO, CPS, FCA, HMRC and others, as well as the Multilateral Development Banks and International Financial Institutions such as the World Bank Group – and the presence both within the team and within Outer Temple more broadly of experts in employment law and litigation – is critical in ensuring clients receive the best possible advice arising from an investigation.

Our experience also ensures that we can advise and represent those who find themselves the subject of an investigation, helping them present the best case possible and reducing the risk of personal liability.

Investigations Experience

Our work includes matters relating to:

  • Advising corporates and other large organisations on the legal and regulatory risks of matters under investigation
    Scoping internal investigations and creating investigation strategies
  • Planning and leading investigations into suspected internal misconduct, regulatory breaches and criminal offences, both domestic and international
  • Conducting and overseeing all stages of an investigation, including forensic document review, interviews with witnesses and subjects, risk assessments, policy and procedure analysis and reporting
  • Investigating alleged misconduct on MDB-financed projects
  • Negotiation with external stakeholders including business partners, regulators and law enforcement with a view to exploring settlement or self-reporting
  • Advising and representing individuals who are the subject of, or witnesses in, internal investigations
  • Advising and representing whistleblowers, in their dealings both with their employers and with external regulators or law enforcement
  • Advising on the redesign of integrity compliance programmes in response to investigations, and leading the redesign itself

Members of our Business Crime and Regulation team have been involved in numerous investigations for clients from the UK and elsewhere, including:

  • Inquiries for a multinational healthcare products and medical devices group into allegations of corporate fraud, bribery and money laundering in the UK, US and Greece, involving challenges to the admissibility of material including a US DPA.
  • Leading an internal investigation into alleged fraud at the Asian Regional Office of a UN-specialised agency headquartered in Geneva;
  • Post-settlement international investigations following red flag reviews as agreed with the World Bank Group and the
  • African Development Bank Group;
  • Advice on the scope of an internal investigation for a multinational corporate spanning several jurisdictions, and on witness interviews and privilege issues;
  • Advice to a FTSE 250 company on the AML and bribery & corruption implications of an internal investigation;
  • Advising on and undertaking an inquiry into allegations of misconduct (including sexual harassment) levelled at a director of a leading UK technology firm;
  • Multiple members of Chambers are instructed on the Dame Linda Dobbs Review, which considers whether issues relating to HBOS Reading were investigated and appropriately reported to authorities at the time by Lloyds Bank Group following its acquisition of HBOS.

Investigations Barristers

Michael Bowes QC

Call: 1980 Silk: 2001

Ben Compton QC

Call: 1979 Silk: 2011

Richard Hitchcock QC

Call: 1990 Silk: 2014

John McKendrick QC

Call: 1999 Silk: 2016

Nick Johnson QC

Call: 1994 Silk: 2016

Fiona Horlick QC

Call: 1992 Silk: 2019

Paul Rogers

Call: 1989

James Leonard

Call: 1989

Matthew McDonagh

Call: 1994

Oliver Powell

Call: 2006

Alex Haines

Call: 2007 (England & Wales); 2019 (New York); and 2020 (Ireland)

Justina Stewart

Call: 2010

Sophie O’Sullivan

Call: 2011

Stephen Doherty

Call: 2013

Jeremy Scott-Joynt

Call: 2018

Joshua Hitchens

Joshua Hitchens

Call: 2018

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