Featured UK

The Northern Irish ghost companies that mask crime worldwide

By David Leask, Peter Geoghegan and Richard Smith openDemocracy — Nikolai Sukhanov is used to flags of convenience. The flags of many nations flutter from the stern of ships on the docks and quays of Nakhodka in Russia’s far east. Owners often register their vessels thousands of miles from home, in countries… Read More

UK in-house lawyer was ‘puppet director’ for dubious £16m schemes

An in-house solicitor who gave a ‘veneer of respectability’ to dubious property schemes has been struck off the roll. The Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal heard that Timothy Ackrel was one of a succession of ‘puppet directors’ used to conceal the beneficiaries of a scheme to sell apartment blocks in north west… Read More

Cum-Ex Trading: Challenges for Regulators

“This was a collective case of thievery from state coffers”—so declared presiding Judge Roland Zickler of the Bonn criminal court in December 2019 at the trial of Martin Shields and Nicholas Diable, two British traders charged with aggravated tax evasion in Germany’s biggest post-war fraud prosecution. Although this was only… Read More
26th March 2020
It happened: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the strictest curbs on life in the UK during peacetime. This followed the adoption of emergency legislation which, most controversially and among others, gives law enforcement agencies the right to detain people on public health grounds and place them in isolation. Meanwhile, shops have experienced… Read More
25th March 2020
UK banks are stepping up fraud prevention measures to protect customers from scammers eager to exploit the coronavirus pandemic with a whole range of new tricks, including fake sales of medical supplies and bogus government relief schemes. With British households effectively on lockdown, some banks said customers had already been… Read More
19th March 2020
Two former London investment bankers were convicted of tax evasion at Germany’s first trial over so-called Cum-Ex trades in a landmark ruling that could lead to hundreds more cases. The bankers, Martin Shields and Nicholas Diable, were able to avoid jail by cooperating with prosecutors. The Bonn court gave both… Read More
19th March 2020
The UK is privately pressing the US to ease sanctions on Iran to help it fight the growing coronavirus outbreak. Official figures published by the Iranian health ministry on Wednesday said 1,135 have so far died in Iran and 17,361 have been infected. A total of 147 were recorded… Read More
18th March 2020
After a seven-year investigation and a five-month trial, jurors took less than six hours to find Roger Jenkins, Tom Kalaris and Richard Boath not guilty of fraud. The former Barclays executives stood accused of funnelling secret fees to Qatar during the financial crash in exchange for emergency investment. Eight months… Read More
18th March 2020
Embattled lender Metro Bank has been hit with a fresh lawsuit by a group of Iranian customers who say their accounts were unfairly suspended without notice or explanation. The group of 17 claimants, who are expected to seek at least £1.5m in damages, include dual British-Iranian citizens, Iranian citizens… Read More
18th March 2020
The consumer group Which? is calling on the government to force all banks to adopt new anti-fraud measures, after finding that more than £1bn has been lost to bank transfer scams in just three years. Which? analysed bank fraud statistics since the start of 2017 and says the losses… Read More
17th March 2020
Top 50 U.K. firm Withers has been rebuked by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) for failing to adequately provide anti-money laundering training to relevant employees. According to the SRA, the firm “failed to take appropriate measures to ensure that its relevant employees were regularly given training in how to recognize… Read More
16th March 2020
A suspicious death and a frantic race to prevent a body decomposing. A missing £140m. And, in London, frozen HSBC accounts which could solve a year-long, complex mystery that has captivated the internet and ruined thousands. Welcome to the Quadriga affair, a grim, global treasure-hunt whose clues have surfaced in… Read More
16th March 2020
The mystery of who owns 221b Baker Street must be solved, politicians have said after a crackdown on unexplained wealth targeted a Kazakh family linked to the Sherlock Holmes address. The real property behind the fabled home of Britain’s best-loved detective is part of a block of office and flats… Read More