We have extensive experience of representing individuals who have become embroiled in insider dealing investigations, whether they are professional traders or have become caught up in an investigation through personal trading on their own account.
Insider dealing covers allegations of trading whilst in possession of inside information, encouraging others to deal in such circumstances and disclosure of inside information other than in the proper performance of one’s employment. The person who discloses the confidential information may do so to a friend, family member or colleague without any expectation that intention that person would trade on the basis of the information disclosed.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the main agency responsible for investigating these offences, is devoting increased resources to their detection and enforcement.
Suspected insider dealing may be dealt with a regulatory basis as a potential breach of Article 14 of the Market Abuse Regulation, which could result in a fine and / or ban from working in financial services. It can also be dealt with as a potential criminal offence under s.52 Criminal Justice Act 1993, which carries a maximum penalty of seven years’ imprisonment and / or a fine.
The FCA is taking on increasingly complex investigations and prosecutions, such as Operation Tabernula, one of the UK’s largest ever insider trading investigations, and often cooperates with overseas authorities including the Department of Justice (DOJ) Commodity Future Trading Commission (CFTC) and Securities Exchange Commission (SEC), as in the recent Forex investigation.
Whatever the circumstances, we understand how stressful and serious it is to be under investigation for insider dealing offences and have a strong track record in achieving the best results for clients facing criminal and / or regulatory scrutiny.
HOW WE CAN HELP
- At the start of an investigation, it is not always clear whether the FCA will pursue civil or criminal proceedings. Our lawyers are experienced in both and, if appropriate, will try to steer your defence strategy down a regulatory route to avoid criminal sanction.
- We have substantial experience of negotiating settlements and contesting findings before the FCA’s Regulatory Decisions Committee (RDC) and the Upper Tribunal.
- We can assist in relation to dawn raids, arrests, interviews under caution, information requirements (see our FAQs below), account restraining orders and extradition requests – all powers that the FCA and its partner agencies have at their disposal and which they may deploy during an insider dealing investigation.
- We offer expert advice in the range of statutory defences (see our FAQs below) that can be raised by those under investigation and whether these may be available in a particular situation.
- We can support clients from the early stages of an investigation through to full court proceedings and settlement negotiations, as appropriate.
- We understand the particular difficulties facing those who work in regulated sectors (financial or otherwise) and will seek to protect clients’ current and future careers during and beyond the investigation.
Our wealth of experience in criminal, regulatory and employment issues arising in the context of insider dealing cases sets us apart from other advisers. We can also call upon reputation management colleagues if required.
We frequently advise in complex, multi-jurisdictional matters and work with established networks of forensic, markets and accounting experts as well as overseas lawyers.
Whatever the situation in question, we offer strategic and practical advice to achieve the best possible outcome for our clients.