Something old, something new – the UK Anti-Corruption Plan

On 18 December 2014, the UK Government published “for the first time” its plan to tackle Corruption in the UK and internationally. In reality, this is a patchwork of various strategies proposed by the Government in recent years, with a few new ideas thrown in for good measure, says Jemma Sherwood-Roberts of Corker Binning.

Legislation, UK Government & Public Sector, Comment, Surveys and Research, Bribery & Corruption, Europe

A year in court: leading cases of 2014

In the last 12 months, the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court have settled some longstanding questions for civil fraud practitioners, including whether a stranger to a trust, accused of dishonest assistance or knowing receipt, can be treated as a trustee, and how to determine if a claimant’s cross-undertaking in damages should be strengthened, to name but two. Laurence Katz of gunnercooke reviews the principal decisions.

Corporate Vehicles / Trusts, Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Dishonesty & Deception, Freezing & Restraint, Bribery & Corruption, Europe

Official crime figures mask rise in fraud and cyber

Fraud offences in the UK rose 5% in the 12 months ending September 2014 according to the country’s national fraud and cybercrime reporting centre, Action Fraud.

Comment, Surveys and Research, Online Fraud, Europe

Weavering hedge fund founder convicted of fraud

The former head of Weavering Capital, the hedge fund that collapsed in 2009 leaving investors with losses of $530m, has been convicted on eight counts of fraud and forgery.

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Securities & Investment Fraud, Europe

Cross-border currents - EU deal on customs fraud and Argentina falls far short on corruption

European Union (EU) governments and MEPs have struck a deal to create two databases containing information on the trade in goods into and out of the EU, to help fight customs fraud.

International agencies, Data Mining & Analysis, Detection, Tax Fraud, Europe, Latin America & Caribbean

SFO closes Autonomy accounts investigation

The Serious Fraud Office had ended its probe into alleged “accounting misrepresentations” by software group Autonomy, which Hewlett-Packard bought for $11.1bn in 2011, only to take an $8.8bn write-down on the acquisition months later.

Investigation, Financial Misstatement, Europe, North America

Cyber future – a risk outlook beyond 2015

Big data and the internet of things are here or very near but fraud professionals should also be scanning the cyber event horizon, says Mark Johnson of The Risk Management Group.

Fraud (Risk) Management, Comment, Surveys and Research, Technology

The ponderous progress of international fraud law

Though fraud is often international in scope, the development of legal measures that cater to the complexities involved in apprehending criminal activity across borders has dawdled for decades. In the first of a two-part article, Mark Surguy sets out the UK and European frameworks as well as some cases which show their limitations.

Criminal & Civil Proceedings, Legislation, Europe

’Ello, ’ello, ’ello: how English courts continue to police the world

2014 was a bumper year for the English court exercising its powers to freeze the assets of alleged wrongdoers. Jamie Curle, Sarah Ellington, Min Weaving and Yasmin Bailey of DLA Piper examine both the established principles and new applications of the English court’s jurisdiction, and note the growing number of foreign parties relying on its long arm.

Criminal Confiscation & Civil Recovery, Disclosure, Freezing & Restraint, Europe

Political economy: China corruption update

President Xi Jinping’s anti-graft campaign may be taking out tigers as well as the flies - most recently Ma Jian, China’s spy chief - but disclosure requirements for companies listed on overseas markets are testing the authorities’ appetite for openness, reports Gao Fu Mao from Beijing.

Bribery & Corruption, Asia-Pacific

The Latin beat – a local guide

Venezuela boasts more oil reserves than any other nation in the world and, with several other oil-producing countries in the region, Latin America possesses some 20 per cent of the world’s known resource. However, as prices sag for the foreseeable future, there are heightened fraud risks for those doing business in the region, reports Fernando Cevallos.

Fraud (Risk) Management, Prevention, Bribery & Corruption, Latin America & Caribbean

Coming clean: Deepwater Horizon, a study in disaster cost control

A major disaster scenario – where mass procurement of services and goods is conducted under acute time pressures – poses particular problems for fraud prevention. Adam Bowen, who undertook senior accounts payable roles in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, can speak from experience.

Case Studies / Red Flags, Prevention, Response Plan, Vendor, Supplier and Procurement Fraud, North America

Payrolls at higher risk, finds KPMG

Abuse of authority in finance departments is among the notable increases in fraud cases going through UK courts, according to the latest fraud barometer from accountants KPMG.

Comment, Surveys and Research, Europe

Key Fraud Indicators in practice

In this second of two articles on KFIs, Emmanuel Pascal, of food company Brakes Group in France, provides examples of how fraud indicators can be put to effective use.

Case Studies / Red Flags, Detection, Fraud (Risk) Management

SEC to focus on micro-cap risk

US regulators are turning their attention to combating microcap fraud. In a set of ‘examination priorities for 2015’ released on Tuesday [13 January 2015], the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) says it plans to probe transfer agents, back-office organisations that “serve as important gatekeepers”, to prevent fraud.

Investigation, Securities & Investment Fraud, North America

Public procurement is high priority, says OLAF director general

Public procurement for infrastructure projects in the European Union (EU) involving spending EU public money is particularly prone to fraud, the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) director general has told Fraud Intelligence.

International agencies, Investigation, Cartels, Intellectual Property Fraud, Tax Fraud, Vendor, Supplier and Procurement Fraud, Europe

Developing countries lose more from tax evasion than they gain in aid, GFI

Tax evasion drained a record US$991.2 billion in illicit financial flows from developing economies in 2012 - facilitating crime and corruption, according to a new study by Global Financial Integrity (GFI), a Washington DC-based research and advisory organisation.

Comment, Surveys and Research, Money Laundering, Tax Fraud