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At Hugh James, we have extensive experience of acting for individuals accused of fraud & financial offences. We have advised clients in connection with investigations conducted by the Police, HM Revenue and Customs, Department of Health, and the Serious Fraud Office. Our expertise in this field has been consistently recognised in the leading legal directories, including the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners. We have particular expertise in VAT fraud matters.

Our services


Allegations of fraud can be very damaging, both to individuals and organisations. Allegations can range from making false statements, failing to disclose information, acting in abuse of position, obtaining services dishonestly, or making fraudulent or dishonest declarations in connection with taxation matters or mortgage applications. Allegations may be made in connection with an individual’s private or professional life. For professionals, especially those within the regulated professions, allegations of dishonesty can be particularly damaging, with the prospect of professional disciplinary proceedings also being brought. Our team has particular experience of tax fraud allegations.


The Bribery Act officially came into force on 1 July 2011 and requires companies to look very carefully at their anti-corruption procedures to ensure they have firm and transparent policies which comply with the legislation. The penalties for non-compliance are severe, including hefty fines and even lengthy jail terms.

The four offences contained in the Act are:

  • offering a bribe
  • taking a bribe
  • offering a bribe to a foreign public official
  • failure of commercial organisations to prevent bribery

Organisations need to ensure that their anti-bribery procedures are adequate to meet the requirements of the Bribery Act. We have provided advice and seminars to numerous organisations both before and following the implementation of the Bribery Act.

Our specialist solicitors can offer Bribery Act advice and training to board members and staff, as well as a review of current procedures for compliance. We have advised high profile clients including major sporting bodies, public sector organisations, housing associations and large companies on the likely impact of the Bribery Act on their business and what action needs to be taken to ensure adherence. The department has also advised a large multinational with its headquarters in the US on the potential cross-border impact of the Bribery Act on its operation.

Money laundering

All businesses have some exposure to regulations designed to prevent money laundering and terrorist financing. Those in the regulated sector face significant penalties from their regulators and / or criminal sanctions if they fail to meet their responsibilities.

We act in an advisory capacity providing advice on anti-bribery and anti-money laundering compliance systems. We have significant experience of anti-money laundering measures in the regulated sector, including casinos. We are often asked to draw up or review anti-fraud and anti-money laundering policies and we regularly provide training to Directors and Senior Managers on these and associated topics.

Key contact

As the Head of the Regulatory Department, Martin acts in a wide-range of regulatory crime and professional regulation matters. Martin has built up over 20 years of experience and a wealth of specialist knowledge.

He leads the firm’s cross-departmental alcohol and gaming licensing teams. Additionally Martin manages the teams providing a range of outsourced services to local authorities, including court representation of local authorities Adult and Children’s Services Departments.

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