Long-awaited London Capital & Finance report delayed

The report into the regulation of London Capital & Finance (LCF) is set to be delayed once again. The much-anticipated findings from the investigation into the circumstances surrounding LCF’s collapse and the Financial Conduct Authority’s (FCA) supervision of LCF were initially pushed back to 30 September 2020 but are now more likely to be released […]

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Financial hide and seek

Roger Isaacs, Forensic Partner at Milsted Langdon, was quoted in The Times recently discussing the potential pitfalls of shared finances and how this can lead to ‘financial abuse’ or other situations where financial knots need untangling. This includes situations ranging from having a joint bank account where one party is siphoning off funds, to a […]

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Challenging the prosecution’s evidence

A recent case brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) is a good example of how those facing prosecution for fraud can use forensic accounting to challenge the evidence brought by prosecutors when facing serious criminal allegations. In this case, three men have been charged with multiple offences in connection with the collapse of a […]

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HMRC cracks down on tax evasion

High net worth individuals might have to be able to prove that they are paying the correct amount of tax as the Government ramps up its investigations into tax evasion. HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) is seeking to show its commitment to combatting non-payment of tax by launching probes into individuals and firms it suspects […]

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When the difference between income and assets doesn’t add up

A couple who led an extravagant lifestyle, with cash in the bank and three expensive Patek Philippe watches in their safe, have been arrested after they appeared to have a combined income of no more than £49,000. This case has revealed that the couple had assets worth more than £1 million, but only declared income […]

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HMRC cracks down on furlough fraud

HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has confirmed that it is cracking down on furlough fraud, having given employers just 30 days to admit any mistakes made on claims. Almost £20 billion has been paid out to more than one million employers in furlough claims via the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), as of 7 June […]

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Online hearings

One of the many consequences of the Lockdown is that Virtual or Online Court hearings have become the norm in civil litigation. Recent experience suggests that they can, at their best, work very efficiently but there is no doubt that they will never be an entirely satisfactory replacement for the giving and hearing of oral […]

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International Wirecard fraud uncovered

The former CEO of the German payment processing firm Wirecard, billionaire Markus Braun, has been arrested for fraud on charges of false accounting and market manipulation. Prosecutors claim that Mr Braun, who resigned from his post days before his arrest, was involved in artificially inflating the balance sheet of the company by €1.9 billion to make […]

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The battle continues over the UK’s largest divorce settlement

Tatiana Akhmedova is fighting to obtain the divorce settlement she is owed by her Russian billionaire ex-husband following the UK’s Biggest ever divorce settlement. Ms Akhmedova was awarded a 41.5 per cent share of her husband’s fortune, thought to be worth more than £1 billion, by a British judge in late 2016. The assets include […]

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Government review of Horizon IT system failure launched

The Government has launched a review into the failings of the Fujitsu Horizon IT system that caused Post Office Branch Managers to be falsely accused of fraud. More than 550 Post Office Branch Managers, known as Sub-Postmasters, brought legal action against the Post Office after being wrongly accused of fraud and other offences.   The […]

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Embezzlement – The impact on a family business

A retired accounts worker has been jailed for stealing more than £400,000 over nine years from the brewery where she was employed. Lesley Freestone had worked for the family-owned St Austell Brewery for more than 40 years, rising to the position of Purchase Ledger Supervisor by the time she retired. It is believed that the […]

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Cash as a clue

A recent case in Yorkshire shows the importance of cash as a clue in forensic investigations. People with large amounts of cash who cannot give a realistic reason for its source may be suspected of having criminal intent. In a recent case, a driver was stopped by police on the M1 and, when the vehicle […]

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The ‘Azerbaijani Laundromat’

The Evening Standard has recently won a case allowing it to view previously undisclosed documents in the ‘Azerbaijani Laundromat’ case but is not allowed to name the couple at the centre of the allegations. The National Crime Agency (NCA) had submitted confidential papers to the court detailing the alleged activities of a husband and wife […]

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“Individual measures” taken in Vatican forensic investigation

The Holy See has announced that ‘individual measures’ have been taken against officials in a financial investigation that has been ongoing in its secretariat for months. Vatican prosecutors are continuing their investigation into suspicious financial transactions and investments that were launched last year. One lay secretariat official, Fabrizio Tirabassi, was suspended in October 2019 following […]

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Valuing a ‘mothballed’ business

Even if the country, if not the world, appears to be in stasis, life goes on as before at a granular level; babies are born, birthdays are celebrated and couples split up. As many of us know from personal experience, the pandemic has cut across many activities – people have had to amend or shelve […]

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Forensic investigation opens ‘can of worms’ for Lookers

Motor sales group Lookers, which has been undertaking financial investigations since March, has now revealed that alleged fraud in the company could cost it £4 million. A recent statement from the firm said that the investigation had identified ‘potential fraudulent transactions’ in one of its operating divisions, which will result in “a one-off, non-cash charge, […]

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Met Police cuts two-thirds of its financial investigation officers as fraud soars during the Covid-19 crisis

A new Freedom of Information request has revealed that the Metropolitan Police has cut the number of financial officers it employs from 91 to just 30 in the last decade, despite a rise in scams. This means that Britain’s largest police force, which often deals with international crime and supports cases across the UK, has […]

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Divorce rates likely to rise following Coronavirus outbreak

With thousands of married couples and civil partners forced to spend more time with each other, without the ability to go out and see friends and family, divorce rates are likely to rise in the coming weeks and months according to a leading family practitioner. Baroness Shackleton of Belgravia told peers in the House of […]

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Businesses and individuals need to take care of Coronavirus fraud

The Government has issued a warning to members of the public and businesses about the potential for fraud related to Coronavirus. Police forces, local authorities and organisations across the UK are being inundated with information from companies and individuals about potential scams that are being operated by fraudsters relying on the panic caused by the […]

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Corrupt Uzbek ‘Princess’ prison sentence extended

Uzbekistan’s Supreme Court has announced that the daughter of the country’s late president, Islam Karimov, will serve a further eight years in prison for corruption and criminal activities estimated to have cost the country a total of more than $2.3 billion. Gulnara Karimova has been found guilty on charges including extortion, racketeering, money laundering and […]

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Investigating governance at the National Citizenship Service Trust

The Big Society organisation, of which former Prime Minister David Cameron is chief patron, is being investigated for the mismanagement of millions of pounds at the National Citizenship Service Trust (NCST). The investigation in to “governance issues” at the Trust is being carried out by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), which […]

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Lessons from the pitch: UEFA vs Manchester City FC

An ongoing financial dispute between UEFA and Manchester City FC, which has seen the football club banned from competing in the Champions League for two years and fined £25m, could lead to further investigations according to UEFA. Manchester City FC is facing an ongoing battle with UEFA under the financial fair play (FFP) rules relating […]

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US case against former Autonomy CEO Mike Lynch

Dr Mike Lynch founded UK firm Autonomy in 1996 with three partners as a spin-off from Cambridge Neurodynamics, a firm specialising in computer-based fingerprint recognition. In 2011, Autonomy was sold to Hewlett Packard (HP) but the US firm swiftly brought a criminal case in the US and a £3.8 billion civil fraud case in the […]

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Could shell companies become more transparent?

Shell companies have long been the vehicles for hiding assets, being based in tax havens such as the British Virgin Islands (BVI), which are notoriously difficult to investigate. However, the Government is committed to publishing a register of the true owners of overseas entities that hold UK property. Kelly Tolhurst, Minister for Small Business, who […]

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One forensic investigation leading to another

In this week’s Silent Witness, the forensic scientists try to find out what happened to a family’s money in the 30 years between a man’s death and the present day. Unsurprisingly, they bring in other forensic experts, of the financial variety, to help them uncover the truth. When used as an adjective, the word forensic […]

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