Managing Director, Sustainability and Resilience
Member of the International Executive Committee
Jean-Pierre (JP) Douglas-Henry has over 30 years' experience of advising clients in more than 45 countries on regulatory matters, compliance and disputes. As Managing Director for Sustainability and Resilience, he sits on the Executive Committee of the international firm and has responsibility for environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters, innovation and resilience.
JP has broad experience of advising on sustainability and ESG issues. He strongly believes that lawyers need to innovate and think "outside of the box" in order to solve problems and leverage opportunities, and that good governance is the foundation of resilience in a fast-moving and ever-changing commercial, political and social context.
JP has decades of experience advising clients on governance, regulatory and compliance issues, representing them in high stakes disputes, and advising on risk management and strategic issues. He has particular knowledge of the financial services and energy and natural resources industries, and has acted for a range of banks, energy and natural resources companies, governments and state-owned enterprises. He has particular experience in complex cross-border matters and class actions or collective redress representation.
JP co-chaired DLA Piper’s Litigation and Regulatory group for five years, overseeing one of the world’s largest compliance, regulatory and disputes practices. His current role, as the Managing Director responsible for Sustainability and Resilience, reflects the evolution of his practice to include a focus on sustainability and ESG, and oversight of the firm’s award-winning Radical Change programme which provides innovative legal and non-legal products and solutions for clients.
Over the years, JP has acted for a number of governments, often in a post-conflict zone context or following civil society engagement, to bring about change and assist with reform, recovery and reconstruction programmes. This includes the recovery of assets misappropriated by the Pinochet regime; helping the Government of the Maldives to recover misappropriated state assets and development bank loans following the 2004 public uprising; assisting the Central Bank of Libya in relation to asset recovery and preservation issues following the Gaddafi revolution in 2011, pending free and democratic elections; and, more recently, acting for the Afghan Government with regard to rule of law reform by the Ghani/Abdullah administration to provide a more stable foreign investment environment and facilitate the rebuilding of the Afghan economy after decades of civil war and revolution.
JP co-led the team that provided pro bono support to the UK and Egyptian Governments as Presidents of COP26 in Glasgow in 2021 and COP27 in Sharm el Sheikh in 2022.
JP's experience includes advising:
- Various clients on ESG strategies, net zero plans, and the concepts of financed and advised emissions; and co-leading the team that provided pro bono advice as Legal Providers to COP26 in Glasgow in 2021. Currently actively involved in preparations for COP27.
- An automotive manufacturer in relation to the defence of English High Court claims by thousands of car owners with respect to the alleged use of emissions "defeat devices" and claims foreshadowed in various European countries following the introduction of the Collective Redress Directive.
- A transportation group in relation to GLO claims in the English High Court with respect to allegedly discriminatory ticket pricing practices in alleged breach of competition law.
- In relation to the defence of English High Court claims with respect to supply chain issues for a FTSE100 retail group, including human rights and modern slavery claims, and associated investigation and remediation in relevant countries in Asia.
- Indigenous miners in Tanzania in relation to modern human slavery and environmental contamination and liability issues, and acting in associated legal proceedings in Tanzania and the UK.
- A gold and copper mining group in Papua New Guinea on claims of environmental contamination of rivers and landslides caused by tailing collapses, and the resulting publicly announced settlement involving community-based rebuilding and rehabilitation of affected lands and the provision of subsidised housing and vocational educational facilities.
- A FTSE100 company in the energy and natural resources sector in relation to parent company liability issues for the actions of its subsidiaries in the US and a number of other jurisdictions, including advice on related governance and behavioural issues.
- An African Government on the review of its portfolio of projects to identify fraudulently procured contracts for the purpose of terminating and/or re-negotiating key contracts and pursuing associated recovery action across multiple jurisdictions.
- A Government in Asia in relation to the termination of a USD5 billion oil field on the basis of force majeure events following an alleged civil insurgency and terrorist activity.
- The Central Bank of Cyprus in relation to the special resolution of EUR2.5 billion FBME Bank following allegations of money-laundering and its interaction with FinCEN, including associated proceedings in Cyprus, the UK, Austria, Germany and the US.
- The Australian Government in relation to the reform of its bank and building society licensing laws and with respect to the associated liquidation of various insolvent building societies and co-operatives.
- An African Government in relation to the reform of its anti-bribery and corruption laws and the pursuit of targeted prosecutions and asset recovery actions against former Government officials.
- A maritime and commodities trading group in relation to alleged fraud and conspiracy claims against their trading counterparty in Nigeria to recover GBP180 million, involving the arrest of an oil tanker and associated cargo with multiple proceedings in England, Nigeria and Rotterdam.
- Investors in relation to the divestment of their interests in oil and gas and mining assets in Central Asia, and GBP350 million associated claims of fraud, breach of duty and conspiracy involving proceedings in the UK, Bahamas and British Virgin Islands.
- A former UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights to a Middle Eastern country in relation to his successful application for political asylum in the UK and with respect to the establishment of a human rights think tank.
- Tasmania, Bachelor of Laws with Honours (1st class)
- Qualified Lawyers' Transfer Test, UK
- Solicitors' Higher Courts (Civil Proceedings) Qualification
Awards and recognition
- Notable practitioner, Litigation, London, Chambers UK 2022
- Leading individual, Banking Litigation: Investment and Retail, London, The Legal 500 UK since 2018
- Leading individual, Commercial Litigation, London, The Legal 500 UK since 2015
- Recommended lawyer, Fraud: Civil, and Health and Safety, London, The Legal 500 UK 2022
- The Legal 500 Global Green Guide 2022: EMEA, Featured International Law Firm
- ESG Initiative Award, Wind Investment Awards 2022
- Environment, Social and Governance Firm of the Year, Partnerships Awards 2022
Memberships And Affiliations
- Law Society of England and Wales
- London Solicitors' Litigation Association
- International Bar Association
- Lowtonian Society
My latest insights
DLA Piper appoints new Head of Strategic Delivery - Sustainability & ESG
10 October 2022 .3 minute read