UK Investigations and Criminal Litigation LITIGATION/CONTROVERSY

Multinational companies, corporate executives, high-ranking public officials and in-house counsel rely on our preeminent practice and depth of experience when facing complex and challenging criminal and regulatory investigations.

Our UK Investigations and Criminal Litigation lawyers advise on all aspects of criminal and regulatory investigations, working across jurisdictions on white-collar crime matters such as fraud, insider dealing, market abuse, bribery and corruption, cartel defence, and corporate investigations. We counsel clients through investigations by a wide range of agencies and prosecution authorities, including the Serious Fraud Office (SFO), the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), the National Crime Agency (NCA), the police and the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), as well as overseas agencies such as the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The UK group is headed by Stephen Pollard, a highly experienced practitioner who is widely recognised as one of the leading white-collar defence lawyers in the UK. Mr. Pollard and his team have particular experience in the defence of financial services fraud, multi-jurisdictional white-collar crime allegations, corruption allegations, criminal cartel allegations and sanctions/export control work. The UK team works closely with colleagues in the United States and Europe to provide a seamless global service. The group also has experience in conducting internal corporate investigations on behalf of companies that suspect employee misconduct or where there is a risk of exposure to a formal criminal or regulatory investigation.

The team's insight and analysis on all aspects of UK white-collar, investigations and regulatory enforcement can be seen on the WilmerHale W.I.R.E. UK blog and on Twitter @WHWhiteCollarUK.


Sort By
Jonas, Stephen A.

Stephen A. Jonas

Co-Chair, Investigations and Criminal Litigation Practice Group

+1 617 526 6144 (t)

Pollard, Stephen

Stephen Pollard


+44 (0)20 7872 1006 (t)

David, Christopher

Christopher David


+44 (0)20 7872 1015 (t)

Proudlock, Elly

Elly Proudlock


+44 (0)20 7872 1016 (t)

Geary, Alison

Alison Geary

Senior Associate

+44 (0)20 7872 1036 (t)


David Rundle

Senior Associate

+44 (0)20 7872 1607 (t)

Firth, Lloyd

Lloyd Firth


+44 (0)20 7872 1014 (t)

Gaafar, Leila

Leila Gaafar


+44 (0)20 7872 1053 (t)

Roach, Michael

Michael Roach


+44 (0)20 7872 1608 (t)


The team is currently instructed on most of the significant SFO and FCA matters, including the investigations into manipulation of benchmarks (Libor and FX), Tesco (accounting irregularities), Barclays (payments to Qatar), Alstom (alleged corruption), Serco (alleged overcharging) and ENRC (alleged corruption in Africa).

Publications & News


September 19, 2016

The Legal 500 UK Recognizes Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP as a Top-Tier Firm

In the 2016 edition of The Legal 500 UK, WilmerHale is named a top-tier firm for dispute resolution - international arbitration and crime, fraud and licensing - fraud: white-collar crime, and is recommended in four other practice areas. The guide also names four partners to its "Leading lawyers" list, and recognizes a total of nine of the firm's London-based lawyers.

September 16, 2016

WilmerHale Named Industry's Most Impressive Investigations Practice by GIR

WilmerHale has been named the Most Impressive Investigations Practice of the Year by Global Investigations Review for its cross-border work in both high-profile internal and government-led investigations.

August 8, 2016

DARK POOLS – The FCA’s Thematic Review

A blog post by David Rundle, published on the WilmerHale W.I.R.E. UK blog.

July 26, 2016

New confiscation recommendations: a price worth paying? 

A blog post by Michael Roach, published on the WilmerHale W.I.R.E. UK blog.

July 12, 2016

United Kingdom: handling internal investigations

An extract by Stephen Pollard, Christopher David and Elly Proudlock from "The European, Middle Eastern and African Investigations Review 2016," published by Global Investigations Review.

July 11, 2016

Audit enforcement: the FRC gets more teeth

In this article published by Economia, Elly Proudlock explores the implications of the Financial Reporting Council's updated status as the UK's competent authority for the regulation of statutory audit, including enforcement.

July 4, 2016

Lawyers and section 2 interviews

Elly Proudlock discusses the Serious Fraud Office's new operational guidance on the presence of lawyers at section 2 interviews in this article published by The Law Society Gazette.

June 13, 2016

The Global Implications of the EU's New Civil Market Abuse Regime

On 3 July 2016 the EU Market Abuse Regulations will come into force, replacing the previous civil market abuse regime as set out in the Market Abuse Directive. Given its extra-territorial effect, the changes brought in by MAR are likely to have implications for market participants located outside the EU. [Also published on the WilmerHale W.I.R.E. UK blog.]

May 26, 2016

Whistleblower Bounties Could be Coming to the UK

In this article published by the Times Brief, Elly Proudlock discusses the possibility of the government offering cash incentives to whistleblowers in the UK.

May 26, 2016

The Inside Scoop: What does Tabernula tell us about the future of criminal insider dealing enforcement in the UK?

A blog post by Leila Gaafar, published on the WilmerHale W.I.R.E. UK blog.


  • Chambers UK: A Client's Guide to the UK Legal Profession - WilmerHale is ranked for Financial Crime: Corporates – London in the 2016 edition of the Chambers UK guide, which says WilmerHale has a "strong global white-collar crime practice recognised for its work representing clients in major SFO investigations [and they] counsel an array of corporates and individuals from various sectors including media, technology and banking."
  • The Legal 500 UK - In the 2015 edition, WilmerHale is named a top-tier firm for crime, fraud and licensing - fraud: white-collar crime.
  • Global Investigations Review (GIR) - WilmerHale's investigations practice was placed second in GIR's 2015 list of the 30 leading global investigations and compliance practices.
  • Chambers Global - WilmerHale is ranked in the 2016 edition for corporate investigations and corporate investigations: anti-corruption.
  • Law360 - Ranked WilmerHale number six in its 2015 Securities/White Collar Practice Group Partner rankings, which recognize the 100 largest and most powerful securities and white-collar practices.
  • The Lawyer - Ranked WilmerHale among the top 10 litigation practices in the world in the 2013 list of the Global Litigation Top 50.


Sentencing of Corporate Offenders in the UK: A Practical GuideSentencing of Corporate Offenders in the UK

On 1 October 2014, the Sentencing Council's Definitive Guideline for Fraud, Bribery and Money Laundering Offences (the Guideline) came into force, providing for the first time a framework for the sentencing of corporate offenders in the UK. The Guideline, which was created as part of a package to support the introduction in the UK of Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs), contains a 10-step process to be followed by the criminal courts when sentencing corporations for fraud, bribery and money laundering offences.

This publication aims to provide a practical, working guide to that process, linking the reader to relevant material.

View and print a PDF of the guide


Deferred Prosecution Agreements: A Practical GuideDeferred Prosecution Agreements

The introduction of Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPA) in the UK has been hotly anticipated, and on 24 February 2014 the law finally came into force.

Our practical working guide covers the process through which DPAs are offered, arranged and, if breached, terminated. The guide also explores current DPA trends in the United States.

View and print a PDF of the guide