White Collar Defense

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White collar crimes along with abuse of office are the most difficult offences both to investigate and to defend. They are subject of over 40 articles in the Criminal Code of Ukraine which alone is sufficient evidence of serious attention to this area on the part of the legislator and the law enforcement authorities.

Arzinger’s criminal defence practice covers business protection and white collar defence.

The most frequent white collar crimes are:

  • computer and Internet fraud,
  • credit cards fraud,
  • bankruptcy fraud,
  • health care fraud,
  • environmental crime,
  • insurance fraud,
  • tax evasion,
  • financial fraud,
  • payoffs,
  • bribes,
  • corruption,
  • money laundering,
  • theft of trade secrets,
  • business/industrial espionage etc.

Corporations often become targets of white collar crime. There are many cases when financial fraud and abuse of power are committed by employed managers and company’s authorized representatives. Using their powers, criminals are able to get control over company’s assets, obtain personal financial benefits from business transactions that are unprofitable to the principal.

Here we speak about fraud, misappropriation, embezzlement, abuse of power or office, negligence etc.

Another big threat for business is raiders, who descend to both extortion and document forgery.

In case of a raider attack it is exceptionally difficult to protection target companies as raiders are highly educated lawyers and economists who act very clever and cautious deceiving founders and investors who trusted them. Neither complicated negotiations nor complex litigation nor criminal case can be avoided here.

In such cases it could mean interference with legal business activity, wilful causation of bankruptcy, financial fraud, stock market manipulations, violation of the procedure for keeping ledger of registered stock owners and many other crimes.

Protecting interests of our clients we carry out legal due diligence in order to reveal weaknesses and risks of hostile takeovers in company’s structure and to develop adequate security measures – kind of “anti-raider” defence. At this, knowledge and consideration of client’s business specifics is crucial.

After begin of an illegal takeover defence means a complex of measures in order to assess state of the case, specifics of business processes, management structure etc. It is very important to provide owners and the management with competent and professional defence during criminal proceedings. Taking into account constant changes of the legislation and introduction of new “creative” takeover strategies, one cannot rely on standard anti-raider measures in all cases.

Business or industrial espionage is another threat to business. Sometimes persons holding information do not realize its value and do not even try to protect it making crimes so much easier to commit and allowing the accessibility of information and lack of protection to tempt potential criminals. Anyone could become a victim – a big corporation or just a start up. That is why, safety is everyone’s concern.

Crimes in this area include: illegal gathering or use of trade or bank secrets, illegal use of insider information, unauthorized interference with work of computers etc.

It is possible to avoid any problems in business by taking necessary precautions on time. Usually everything begins with an inspection – either by tax authorities or officers of the economic crime department. Any remarks of the law enforcement authorities as to company’s economic activity result in attempts to bring charges against and to prosecute company’s top- management.

Arzinger represents interest of the top-management – company’s officers and employees with management functions. We ensure legal protection on all stages of criminal proceedings, including during inspection of company’s financial or business activity or tax legislation compliance, during pre-trial investigations or criminal trials.

Our first concern is to close criminal proceedings on the stage of pre-trial investigation which includes:

  • consulting and protection of company’s employees brought to criminal liability due to their official functions;
  • protection of interests of a suspect/defendant during the whole pre-trial investigation;
  • preparation of a suspect/defendant to and participation of an attorney at interrogations or other investigatory actions;
  • legal assistance by expert examinations, selection of an expert institution or an expert, establishment of an expert commission, assessment and use of export reports;
  • appeal against decisions, actions or omissions of pre-trial investigators, the public prosecutor or the investigating magistrate during a pre-trial investigation;
  • appeal against property seizure, detention or custody;
  • development of a defence strategy during the pre-trial investigation and other necessary actions;
  • in case of indictment: comprehensive legal support and court defence in order to get an acquitting judgment.

Our attorneys successfully represent clients in criminal cases in such areas as:

  • credit and financial, banking and budget system;
  • entrepreneurship, competition and other companies’ activity;
  • trade secret and information protection;
  • bankruptcy;
  • use of financial funds and securities turnover;
  • state or municipal property privatization;
  • abuse of office;
  • failure to comply with a court judgment.