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Asset Recovery 2017: Experts Analysis

We also highlight 149 outstanding forensic accountants, as well as insolvency and investigations experts, from a variety of onshore and offshore jurisdictions for their expertise in this year’s research. 

Large international outfits FTI Consulting, Grant Thornton, Deloitte and KPMG perform well in this edition achieving over a third of the listings between them. 

UK

Thought Leaders
1. Kevin Hellard Grant Thornton, London
2. Michael Leeds Grant Thornton, London
3. David Ingram Grant Thornton, London
4. Ian Casewell Mintz Group, London
5. Nick Wood Grant Thornton, London
 The Thought Leaders are those individuals who received the highest number of nominations from peers, corporate counsel and other market sources this year. Our research has identified them as being truly outstanding practitioners and the very best in their field.
 

Leading Firms

Who's Who Legal does not list law firms, only individual lawyers. The leading firms are those in each region whose listed practitioners received the most total nominations in our research.
 

GRANT THORNTON continues to be a dominant force in the asset recovery field and its UK team leads the market in this year’s research, garnering five listings.
Kevin Hellard is a “pugnacious and commercial” expert who lawyers “rank very highly”. He has a “huge breadth of experience” assisting clients with the recovery of assets.
Michael Leeds is “absolutely superb”, when it comes to complex tracing matters, according to sources. He is further commended as a “sensible, solution-oriented” practitioner.
David Ingram is a highly experienced figure who leads the firm’s proceeds of crime group and has deep expertise on both UK and international fraud matters.
The “excellent” Nick Wood is once again identified in our research as a thought leader. He has extensive experience in asset recovery across CIS, EMEA and the Caribbean, among other jurisdictions.
“Sensible operator” Will Davies is known as “a rainmaker” who focuses his practice on offshore and UK-related investigations.

FTI CONSULTING is a leading name in global investigations and asset recovery. It continues to have a deep presence in London with four top practitioners listed.
Matthew Richardson is “outstanding” in asset recovery matters involving both onshore and offshore assets. His superb international experience includes several years working in the British Virgin Islands.
Andrew Durant is similarly highly rated by sources, who call him “excellent in all regards”. He is notable for his expertise in African jurisdictions and is also experienced in recovery across the UK, Europe and the Caribbean.
Ian Thompson is a fraud expert with extensive offshore and onshore experience. Commentators are quick to describe him as “extremely intelligent and diligent”.
Wayne Anthony is also recommended for his forensic accounting prowess and has notable experience in the financial services industry.

BDO is a prominent name in the UK market and leads the way with six practitioners listed in this year’s research.
Gervase MacGregor is described as “a force to be reckoned with” in the area. Sources say that he is “hugely respected for the quality and quantity of his work”.
Gavin Williamson is praised by clients for his “strong grasp of detail” and his “clear feel for the wider strategy and context of the matters”.

Two leading names from BURFORD CAPITAL are highlighted.
Michael Redman is a “sophisticated” contentious insolvency practitioner who has “a great deal of experience in the market”. One solicitor comments: “Michael is technically excellent and well connected in Eastern Europe and Russia.”
Daniel Hall is lauded as “one of the top minds in the business” by leading international practitioners. He has assisted on numerous multimillion-dollar recoveries involving complex international frauds.

Other Leading Individuals

We highlight individuals at other firms who also scored very highly in our research.
 

The “excellent” David Alexander of SMITH & WILLIAMSON is a “pragmatic and well-measured” expert with more than 25 years of experience in the area.

Thought leader Ian Casewell at MINTZ GROUP is a “market-focused practitioner” and “a great operator”. He is regularly called upon to coordinate asset-tracing involving complex international scenarios.

DELOITTE’s Simon Cuerden is a major figure in the UK market and the head of the firm’s disputes and investigations department. He has deep expertise in forensic investigations and reviews.

Alex Plavsic of KPMG “really knows his stuff” according to peers, who highlight his outstanding experience in a wide range of high-profile cases in the UK and internationally.

Will Kenyon of PWC is a “superb practitioner” who focuses his practice on economic crime and recovery actions.


Offshore

Thought Leaders
1. Marcus Wide Grant Thornton, Tortola
2. Mark McDonald Grant Thornton, Tortola
3. David Griffin FTI Consulting, Grand Cayman

Leading Firms

GRANT THORNTON achieves four listings across the BVI and Cayman Islands.
“Seasoned campaigner” Marcus Wide emerges as the leading practitioner across the offshore jurisdictions in this year’s research with superb expertise in complex asset recovery.
Mark McDonald handles matters in the BVI and eastern Caribbean involving contentious insolvency. Sources highlight him as “really good in the field”.
Hugh Dickson is also highlighted for his extensive skill and experience in the area.

Three practitioners from FTI CONSULTING are listed.
David Griffin is a “real class act” and “quite simply one of the best in the business” according to impressed sources. One interviewee comments: “David is a reliable, straight-talking and decisive person. He has a pragmatic attitude to problem solving and always delivers the right solution – a rare find.”
The “excellent” Andrew  Morrison “has a broad and deep knowledge of the field”, say sources, who commend his “keenness to explore commercial solutions” as a particular strength.
Ian Morton in the BVI also garners numerous recommendations for his extensive skill in the area.

KPMG has five practitioners listed from offshore jurisdictions.
Russell Crumpler is a “very well-known” figure in the market who is “outstanding” in asset recovery mandates.
Alex Lawson is part of “one of the strongest practices on Grand Cayman” and is a “very active figure who is seen regularly in the market”.
Kris Beighton in the same office is “one of the best practitioners on the island” according to sources.

At KALO in the BVI, Stuart Mackellar is recommended for his handling of asset recovery involving cross-border insolvency matters, while Paul Pretlove is noted as a “really good name in the field”.

Other Leading Individuals

British Virgin Islands

Martin Trott of RHSW CARIBBEAN is a leading insolvency practitioner with over 20 years of experience in complex cross-border matters involving onshore and offshore jurisdictions.
Matthew Wright “has become a real force in the market” according to sources, who regularly see him on sophisticated mandates.

Cayman Islands

Highly regarded practitioner Michael Pearson of FUND FIDUCIARY PARTNERS is frequently seen by sources on complex funds issues involving offshore assets.


Rest of the World

Thought Leaders
1. Guillermo Jorge Governance Latam, Buenos Aires

Leading Individuals

Brazil

GOVERNANCE LATAM is home to two listed lawyers.
Guillermo Jorge is a “prominent figure on the scene”, according to sources, who comment on his capabilities in complex money-laundering and asset recovery issues.
Fernando Basch also stands out for his work in the area.

Canada

Sources are left “very impressed” by James Pomeroy of PWC in Halifax, Nova Scotia, who handles tracing issues across Canada the Caribbean and Central America.

Hong Kong

Cosimo Borrelli of BORRELLI WALSH is “a well-known expert and one of the top appointment-takers in Hong Kong” according to sources. Other commentators call him “dogged when it comes to hunting down assets”.

USA

Jim Mintz of MINTZ GROUP is a highly experienced figure in global investigations and the top name in the USA according to our research.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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