• Jessica Parker "is very cool and collected".

    Chambers UK 2018

  • Edward Grange is "remarkably thorough, inventive and understands clients", he is "everything you'd want in a solicitor."

    Chambers UK 2018

  • "David is brilliant on forensic and disclosure issues."

    Chambers HNW 2017

  • Outstanding practitioner Robert Brown is characterised as reassuring and knowledgeable. Commentators report that “he has a great reputation for snuffing out prosecutions before they even begin. He possesses mature judgement and vast experience in all types of criminal cases.”

    Chambers UK 2015

  • Andrew Smith "is very responsive and very energetic in the way he approaches a problem".

    Chambers UK 2018

  • Andrew Smith is "very erudite and savvy".

    The Legal 500 UK 2017

  • Sources say department head Peter Binning is “very calm and focused in a crisis.” He concentrates on regulatory and fraud litigation, and has substantial experience in defending professionals in domestic and international investigations.

    Chambers UK 2015

  • Edward Grange is ‘fantastic with clients and meticulous in his preparation’.

    The Legal 500 UK 2017

Confiscation

The law on criminal confiscation is bedevilled with complexity and frequent judicial reform. The lead statute, the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (POCA), has been the subject of multiple parliamentary amendment. Any person facing the ordeal of a confiscation order, or of being adversely affected by the making of one, requires expert legal advice. Sometimes confiscation proceedings are more protracted and adversarial than the original criminal proceedings which gave rise to them. Law enforcement agencies are cajoled by Home Office targets and encouraged by the lure of a share of what may be confiscated to devote huge resources to obtaining the highest possible value orders and the longest default imprisonment terms.

In previous years, the law in this area was justifiably described as draconian. The convicted defendant faced a complex web of hostile assumptions and statutory definitions of their alleged benefit from their crime, some of which were merciless and defied common sense. A lack of attention to detail can be disastrous. Read our blog for a story of what can befall a hapless accused. Recently the courts have sought to ameliorate the regime by, for example, the requirement of proportionality. Identifying and taking advantage of these concessions is sometimes hard and injustices especially suffered by the families of an accused can still occur – read our blog here.

Despite a harsh environment, the possibility for negotiation and an eventual settlement which is far smaller than what the prosecution originally demanded is ever-present. When it is about money and how much the State can disgorge, there is always the potential for doing a deal. Judges understand the need for a pragmatic outcome and rarely interfere with a proposal for the amount of a confiscation order which is put forward by both sides. Law enforcement wants cash and will sometimes after initial posturing accept a far lower sum if it can be paid quickly.

We are experts at financial investigations in the context of a looming confiscation order and at negotiating least worst outcomes for the accused and/or their family. Corker Binning also has particular experience of advising in the context of high value tax and fraud cases. Our many years of experience and our knowledge of the comparatively few barristers who are similarly expert in this field enables us to gain an understanding of and insight into the priorities of the law enforcement adversary. This, plus our deep experience of the law, enables us to guide clients through the minefield.

More

Our confiscation lawyers have recently advised on the following matters:

  • A halving of the amount of a confiscation order sought by the prosecution. Corker Binning had to satisfy the judge that the defendant was not concealing his true wealth and that his share of the fraud was far less than asserted. Our client was satisfied and paid the order.
  • Acting for a client who was served with a statement from the CPS asking the Court to make a confiscation order in the sum of £34 million. They claimed the amount he should pay consisted of assets hidden overseas and assets held in the UK. Following our investigation we were able to demonstrate to the Court’s satisfaction that he did not hold assets overseas or within the UK. As a consequence, a nominal order was made.

Named as key individuals in the field of Financial Crime: Individuals by Chambers UK 2018:

chambers-2017
Top_tier_firms

David Corker – Band 1

Peter Binning – Band 1

Jessica Parker – Band 4

Andrew Smith – Band 3

  • Corker Binning is ranked in Band 1 of recommended firms for Financial Crime: Individuals by  Chambers 2018.
  • Corker Binning is ranked as a first tier firm for Fraud by The Legal 500 2017 and David Corker and Peter Binning are named as leading individuals for Fraud.
  • Peter Binning, David Corker, Jessica Parker and Robert Brown are recognised as leading lawyers in Who’s Who Legal: Investigations 2018.