Research Handbook on International Financial Crime
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Research Handbook on International Financial Crime

Edited by Barry Rider

A significant proportion of serious crime is economically motivated. Almost all financial crimes will be either motivated by greed, or the desire to cover up misconduct. This Handbook addresses financial crimes such as fraud, corruption and money laundering, and highlights both the risks presented by these crimes, as well as their impact on the economy. The contributors cover the practical issues on the topic on a transnational level, both in terms of the crimes and the steps taken to control them. They place an emphasis on the prevention, disruption and control of financial crime. They discuss, in eight parts, the nature and characteristics of economic and financial crime, the enterprise of crime, business crime, the financial sector at risk, fraud, corruption, the proceeds of financial and economic crime, and enforcement and control.
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Chapter 46: The management of complex fraud cases

David Kirk


Ever since Lord Roskill published his Fraud Trials Committee report in 1986 there has been a lively debate about the best methods of managing the investigation, prosecution and trial of complex fraud cases. The Criminal Justice Act 1987 adopted some of the recommendations of the Roskill report, including the setting up, in 1988, of the Serious Fraud Office (‘SFO’) which could both investigate and prosecute. It was given a range of powers distinct from other law enforcement, including assertive investigatory tools, transfer provisions and preparatory hearings. Other recommendations, principally a Fraud Trials Tribunal to try complex fraud cases in place of a jury, were put on hold. The significance of the joint investigation and prosecution powers granted to the SFO must be seen in the context of the structure adopted in setting up the Crown Prosecution Service (‘CPS’) two years previously, the cornerstone of which was a strict separation of powers between police and prosecutor. Other fraud prosecutors, notably the Financial Conduct Authority (‘FCA’) and the Competition and Markets Authority (‘CMA’), also have investigation and prosecution powers, while the fraud prosecutions conducted by the Central Fraud Group in the CPS maintain the separation of powers which underscores the formation of the CPS. The advantages and disadvantages of the respective systems have given rise to some comment from time to time, but it is fair to say that the differences have not created significant legal problems over the years.

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