BCL partner, Shula de Jersey assesses the findings of the recent reports by Brian Altman QC and Sir David Calvert- Smith's into the actions of the SFO, for Edward Fennell's Legal Diary.

Here is a short extract from the article*. If you wish to read the full article, please visit Edward Fennell's Legal Diary website.

"On 21July 2022 two much-anticipated reports into the Serious Fraud Office ("SFO") were published: the review of Brian Altman QC into the collapse of the Serco trial and Sir David Calvert-Smith's Independent Review into the SFO's handling of the Unaoil investigation. As Lisa Osofsky, Director of the SFO, said on their publication, the reviews made a "sobering read".

The two reviews laid bare a catalogue of failings at every level of the SFO: individual, managerial and leadership weaknesses and fundamental deficiencies in systems and controls in the disclosure process. Sir David Calvert-Smith's review makes a total of 11 recommendations and Brian Altman QC's review a total of 18 recommendations.

The reports raise issues concerning the internal running of the SFO including a lack of trust between the case team and senior management, a lack of quality assurance and poor compliance with relevant internal SFO policies. A key theme running through both reports is the need for the SFO to have effective disclosure strategies and management, as well as ensuring that the disclosure process is properly resourced, that those conducting it are properly trained and their work is properly reviewed."

*This article was first published by Edward Fennell's Legal Diary on 05 August 2022. If you wish to read the full article, please visit Edward Fennell's Legal Diary website.

Shula de Jersey is a partner specialising in business crime and regulation. Shula has particular expertise in representing individuals in cases involving allegations of complex and serious fraud, money laundering, bribery and corruption. She has acted in numerous high profile matters. Shula also has experience in health and safety investigations and Coroner's inquests having represented both individuals and corporates in relation to work place accidents and deaths. Shula has represented professionals including solicitors and doctors in disciplinary matters before regulatory bodies and has previously acted for the Financial Reporting Council in Tribunal proceedings against accountancy firms.

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