The challenges of splitting pensions in divorce

According to a survey of Which? members conducted in November 2021, only 15 per cent of divorcing couples include pensions in their financial settlement, even though pensions can be one of their biggest joint assets. The number of older couples divorcing is rising, and private pensions are often the most valuable asset for a couple, sometimes worth […]

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Investigation leads to largest- ever sentences for money laundering

An investigation carried out by the Organised Crime Partnership (“OCP”), a joint National Crime Agency (NCA) and Metropolitan Police Service unit, resulted in two men being handed prison sentences for money laundering totalling 33 years. Artem Terzyan and Deivis Grochiatskij headed up an international criminal network responsible for laundering £70 million, of which £10 million […]

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Bondholders finally offered compensation after LCF scandal

Under the proposed terms, the Government will pay 80 per cent of the compensation, up to a maximum of £68,000. Those who still want to fight on in the hope of receiving their principal investments in full can reject the offers when the FSCS contacts them. Approved claimants should get their payments before the end […]

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The Vatican could lose millions over London property sale

Recent reports suggest that the Vatican is about to close a deal with two private-equity firms to sell a London commercial building at the centre of one of the major scandals of Pope Francis’ office. If it goes through, the likely price will be close to $230 million, which is more than $100 million less […]

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Forensic investigation uncovers ‘industrial scale’ false paperwork

A gang that smuggled huge quantities of alcohol into the UK, dodging millions of pounds of VAT at the same time, has been jailed for a total of more than 34 years. The ringleader, Shafqat, or ‘Chas’, Majeed was jailed for 10 years having been found guilty of committing the multimillion-pound VAT and duty fraud […]

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Cleaning up the cash

Money laundering is the process of converting the proceeds of crime into assets to give the appearance of legitimacy. It includes all forms of handling or possessing criminal property, including possessing the proceeds of one’s own crime and facilitating any handling or possession of criminal property. Being found guilty of money laundering can carry a […]

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Ill-gotten gains seized despite no evidence of a crime

A recent newspaper article described cash and luxury watches found in the car of two alleged criminals as ‘ill-gotten gains’. A full police investigation was conducted but the two men were released without charge due to insufficient evidence. However, because the men were unable to prove ownership of the Rolex watches and explain how they […]

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Austrian Chancellor looking to disprove corruption allegations

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz will step down from his post in a bid to defuse a government crisis triggered by allegations of corruption. The move has satisfied his coalition partners, the Greens, who were on the brink of backing a motion of no-confidence in Mr Kurz that could have forced him out of power. The […]

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Bitcoin bonanza for jailed drug dealer

A convicted drug dealer will have more than $1.5 million (£1.08 million) worth of Bitcoin returned to him by the Swedish government after a legal misstep saw prosecutors value the proceeds of their crime in Swedish Krona and not in cryptocurrency. When the man was jailed in April 2019, the prosecutor successfully argued that 36 […]

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Pressure on the Trump organization continues

Barry Weisselberg is the latest employee of the Trump Organization to be scrutinised by prosecutors investigating former President Donald Trump’s business empire. Barry is the son of Allen Weisselberg, the company’s Chief Financial Officer, who was charged with tax fraud in a New York court in July. Barry himself used to manage Mr Trump’s ice […]

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New York prosecutors push for ‘McMafia orders’

As the investigation into the Trump Organization’s finances continues, pressure is being put on the Scottish Government to issue an Unexplained Wealth Order (UWO) in relation to the purchases of former President Donald Trump’s golf courses in Scotland. UWOs, commonly dubbed ‘McMafia orders’ after the popular TV series, were launched in 2018 to give the […]

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Vatican fraud trial

Cardinal Angelo Becciu, once a close ally of Pope Francis, is now on trial in the Vatican, accused of misusing church funds. He is charged with spending €350 million (£299 million) in 2014 on a former Harrods warehouse in London that had permits allowing it to be converted into luxury apartments, which incurred disastrous losses […]

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Extradition could re-open investigation into the sale of Autonomy

A UK court has ruled that Mike Lynch, tech entrepreneur and founder of software firm Autonomy, could be extradited to the US to face charges of conspiracy and fraud in relation to the £7.1 billion sale of the tech business to Hewlett Packard (HP). The extradition hearing had been adjourned to await the outcome of […]

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Behind the scenes – how forensic accountants assisted with the surrender of £4m of laundered money

Milsted Langdon are often asked to work on complex financial cases related to money laundering and fraud – employing their analytical eye to help prosecutors and the courts. Recently their assistance was called upon by the National Crime Agency (NCA). Back in the midst of the national lockdown they were contacted because of their reputation […]

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Largest dispute finally ends with help of forensic investigators

Russian billionaire Farkhad Akhmedov says he has settled a legal fight with his ex-wife after she was given a divorce settlement of about £450 million thought to be the biggest of its kind made by a judge in London. Tatiana Akhmedova was awarded a 41.5 per cent share of her ex-husband’s £1 billion-plus fortune in […]

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Fraudster jailed for funding high life with taxpayers’ money

A fraudster who used taxpayers’ money to fund a lavish lifestyle has been jailed for seven years. Veekshit Ramoo submitted £2.1 million of fraudulent VAT repayment claims to HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC). The claims were made through his bookkeeping company for VAT payments to suppliers that were never made. Fortunately, eagle-eyed HMRC officers spotted […]

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Insolvency service investigates COVID-19 fraud

The Insolvency Service has been given the power to investigate company directors who deliberately wind-up firms to avoid repaying their emergency COVID-19 debt. Directors found guilty of abusing insolvency procedures in this way could be banned from acting as a director for up to 15 years and potentially face criminal prosecution. The Insolvency Service has issued […]

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Investigators unravel complex fraud network

A former tax consultant faces additional jail time for leading a conspiracy that used a string of UK and offshore company bank accounts to steal £6.9 million in taxes paid by clients, which were deducted from workers’ wages through fraudulent payroll schemes. David (Mike) Hughes was sentenced to nine-and-a-half years in August 2019 for conspiracy […]

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Trump – the importance of witness statements in financial investigations

News that a senior Trump Organization official is being brought to testify before a grand jury is a reminder that witnesses are key in any complex financial investigation. According to sources, Jeff McConney, Senior Vice President and Controller for the Trump Organization, is the first employee from the former president’s company who has been called […]

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Defence against financial misconduct allegations

Generally speaking, if employees are accused of financial misconduct in office to the point where the case goes to court, they are likely to do all they can to refute evidence brought by their accusers. To amass this evidence, they often need to employ forensic financial investigators, who will look at the evidence put forward […]

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Bath College scam – Tracing Funds

The phrase ‘cash is king’ used to be a truism but in this digital world, most money changes hands digitally, which can be both a good and a bad thing for anyone suspected of financial crime. This is because all digital transactions leave a footprint that forensic investigators can follow, so where an individual is […]

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The importance of forensic financial investigations to insolvency and the economy

Insolvency and restructuring trade body R3 has recently produced a report highlighting the importance of the role that the insolvency, restructuring and turnaround profession plays in the economy. The report lists the most common reasons why a business fails and more than 10 per cent of insolvency cases involve fraud or criminal activity. According to […]

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The Gates divorce – dividing up the assets

News that Bill and Melinda Gates are divorcing has set the media alight with speculation about how their vast fortune will be divided, although it is believed that the separation will be “civil”. However, if there are multiple high-value assets at stake, dividing them up is never completely straightforward. The divorce settlement is further complicated […]

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Postmasters’ convictions quashed

It is welcome news that judges have quashed the convictions of 39 sub-postmasters who were wrongly prosecuted by the Post Office for theft, fraud and false accounting between 2000 and 2014. During this time, the Post Office prosecuted at least 700 postmasters, based on information from an inaccurate computer accounting system called Horizon. Some postmasters […]

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In-depth investigation finally snares ‘career criminal’

A conman who fleeced numerous businesses, as well as the NHS, to the tune of almost £1.4 million has finally been jailed for more than 11 years, having pleaded guilty to 12 counts of fraud and theft. Stephen Day claimed to the businesses that hired him that he was a financial turnaround consultant but used […]

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