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CumEx Trading Investigations
If you or a business are facing an investigation into CumEx trading, JMW can provide the expert legal advice and early legal representation that you need. Either call us on 0800 652 5559 or complete our online enquiry form and a member of the team will give you a call back as soon as possible.
How JMW Can Help
Our team has a proven track record of advising both individuals and corporations in investigations by the SFO (Serious Fraud Office) and FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) in high profile cases involving conspiracy to defraud, cheating the public revenue, bribery, corruption and insider dealing. Individually, we have experience of representing numerous employees of global banks in relation to LIBOR investigations and prosecutions by the SFO.
We have also defended employees of companies in investigations and prosecutions by the FCA into running collective investment schemes and conspiracy to defraud.
CumEx Trading Investigations Explained
CumEx trading schemes have more commonly been known as dividend arbitrage strategies, or more pejoratively as dividend stripping, amongst European financial markets for many years.
At its simplest, it involves the use of multiple European jurisdictions to take advantage of a ‘withholding tax’ that exists in some member states and revolves around the reimbursement of tax payable on dividends. The UK does not have a withholding tax scheme but this has not stopped allegations from some quarters that CumEx trading schemes have been set up and run from London.
CumEx trading schemes are gaining increasing scrutiny from the authorities and anyone who has been a party to the setting up or operation of such schemes is vulnerable to an investigation. This includes lawyers, accountants, traders and other professionals who have advised on and ratified CumEx trading schemes.
An investigation is extremely disruptive and time-consuming to any individual or business and needs to be carefully managed from the outset. The disruption caused can be heightened in circumstances where authorities exercise their power to freeze assets, often restricting the use of those assets and frustrating day-to-day activity. Further, in the event of a successful prosecution, an application may be made to strip individuals of the totality of their assets often having a devastating and long-lasting impact.
Not everyone involved in such schemes will have committed a criminal offence. For example, being a party to a tax avoidance scheme might raise moral issues for some, but is not necessarily illegal, whereas tax evasion is fundamentally illegal.
We can provide expert advice to establish whether an individual or corporation is potentially liable and consider whether their acts amount to criminal conduct. In our experience, even in circumstances where the scheme is deemed fraudulent, it is rare for all those involved and under investigation to be aware of the impact of their involvement or of the overall dishonesty of the scheme. A careful analysis of the individual role is essential.