Serious Economic Crime and the Use of Forensic Accounting

Toby Duthie, Partner, Forensic Risk Alliance, USA
Frances McLeod, Managing Partner, Forensic Risk Alliance, USA

The growth in demand for specialist forensic accounting skills is a direct reflection of both an increased awareness of the importance of good corporate governance and ethics globally, and increased levels of economic crime - and therefore regulation and enforcement - internationally. Society is becoming far less tolerant of unethical behaviour and, increasingly, the financial markets are seeing robust corporate governance as a “must have” rather than a “nice to have”. At the same time, economic crime is growing exponentially, with cybercrime - thanks to our increasing dependence on technology - raising its ugly head as the latest threat, alongside asset misappropriation, accounting and procurement fraud, investor and market fraud, bribery and corruption, anti-trust violations, and money laundering.

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USA Forensics Consultant December 2012 Vol. 6, No. 21, Autumn 2012

Toby Duthie


Toby Duthie is one of FRA's co-founders and heads its London office. With experience in cases involving government enforcement in the UK and the US, his expertise lies in internal and regulatory investigations, data protection and complex financial modelling, with particular experience in global, multi-jurisdictional cases. Toby was instrumental in the development of FRA's service in the anti-corruption and white-collar defence arena across Europe. He spent more than five years in the US, gaining extensive experience advising on damages amounts in a number of complex civil and criminal litigations and in connection with a number of high-profile FCPA enforcement actions (e.g. Panalpina, Bonny Island LNG and Oil-for-Food). He has also worked on matters involving the UK, Swiss and French regulators. His experience spans a number of areas. He has worked on pre- and post-acquisition due diligence for a number of multinational corporations. He has provided damages modelling and prepared expert reports relating to a dispute involving the acquisition of a major financial institution. He has advised on trust fund and restitution work for the International Criminal Court, involving all aspects of document and evidence management, reparation processes, asset identification and seizure. After graduating with honours from University College London, Toby worked for two years as a steel trader in Hong Kong and China. He then moved to the investment banking division of Deutsche Bank/Morgan Grenfell for seven years, where he focused on infrastructure finance and structured trade finance. This has provided Toby with a strong understanding of financial modelling, financial risk assessment and mitigation as well as deal structuring in both Europe and the Emerging Markets.

Frances McLeod


Frances McLeod is one of the co-founders of FRA and the Managing Partner. She advises diverse clients on anti-corruption (FCPA/OECD/ Bribery Act) issues in terms of response to internal and external investigations, in a compliance context, and in related civil and criminal litigation in a variety of jurisdictions. Having lived and worked in the developing world, the US and Europe, she has first-hand experience in balancing regulatory demands with the working practices of G7/G20 and emerging markets. In addition, she advises a number of European clients on data protection, privacy and related matters in the context of US-driven discovery requests, with an emphasis on providing practical solutions that balance potential conflicts of law. She has also given expert testimony on Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Terror Financing (TF) and has provided technical assistance to several APAC banking regulators on AML best practices. She also provides compliance and internal investigations advice in this area with particular emphasis on transactional analysis, calibration of software tools and effective reporting. Ms McLeod was responsible for the design and implementation of the claim-evaluation and administration systems of the US$1.3 billion Swiss Bank and US$2.5 billion German Slave Labour Holocaust settlements advised on by FRA. In order to develop appropriate systems for such complex and challenging claims, she drew on her experience in banking, evaluating long tail liabilities, corporate and banking/insurance archaeology, forensic accounting and asset tracing. She has been involved in advising all of FRA’s clients responding to the oil-for-food investigations in respect of their investigative and forensic accounting needs – from contributing to the formulation of strategy, presenting complex financial analysis and data, electronic and other discovery, to conducting an evaluation of the database system that underpinned the whole Oil-for-Food programme, and preparing witnesses for interview. Drawing on experience gained in the Swiss Bank investigations, Ms McLeod was instrumental in finding solutions for a number of clients to allow for the presentation of analysis in a manner that was not in breach of Swiss banking secrecy and/or the Swiss Criminal Code. After graduating from Oxford University with a Masters degree, she spent six years in investment banking working in the M&A divisions of Lazards and Schroders in London and of HSBC in Indonesia. She speaks English, French, German and Mandarin Chinese.

FRA (Forensic Risk Alliance)


Forensic Risk Alliance (FRA) is a full service consulting firm specializing in Forensic Accounting, Financial Investigation, Litigation Support, and Electronic Discovery. FRA is comprised of forensic accountants, financial analysts, database & IT experts, and litigation support specialists. We have fluency in German, Chinese, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and English. FRA assists businesses and institutions to resolve complex and high risk financial, legal and regulatory challenges. We offer a variety of solutions that encompasses the complete e-discovery life cycle. We offer collection services, data culling, a custom review platform, jurisdictional processing and hosting, data privacy, and dedicated project management. From our offices in the United States and Europe we have serviced and supported clients in nearly every major jurisdiction across the globe. Recent projects have taken us to Canada, Israel, Germany, Switzerland, France, the Netherlands, the UK, the US, Spain, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Belgium, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, the PRC, Nigeria, Iraq, the UAE, Jordan, Brazil and Australia.

USA Forensics Consultant December 2012 Vol. 6, No. 21, Autumn 2012

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