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Laura Ford

She/HerPartner
“Laura is a supremely effective investigations lawyer… with a deep understanding of relevant legal and regulatory issues and a highly developed investigative skill set.” 
VP Global Investigations, Global Retail Business
About

Laura leads DLA Piper’s Corporate Crime, Investigations & Compliance practice in the UK.  She advises clients in the conduct of UK and multi-jurisdictional investigations into allegations of serious and complex misconduct, including in the areas of bribery, money laundering, fraud, facilitation of tax evasion, sanctions, data breach and human rights, and represents and defends clients in matters concerning the Serious Fraud Office, HMRC, Financial Conduct Authority and others regulatory and enforcement bodies.

Laura also advises clients in the design and implementation of their global compliance programmes - from risk assessment to  policy drafting and training - and conducts due diligence and investigations in the context of corporate transactional activity. She is experienced in conducting investigations and compliance mandates in the energy, life sciences, defence, logistics, retail, gambling, property and other sectors. 

Laura is Deputy Money Laundering Reporting Officer for DLA Piper in the UK.  She is recognised as a leading investigations lawyer in Global Investigations Review’s “100 remarkable women in investigations” list for 2021 and as a “Future Leader” in the 2022 edition of Who’s Who Legal: Investigations. She is also a partner sponsor in our gender diversity network The Leadership Alliance for Women (LAW) and a mentor in our social mobility network Head Start, which aims to improve equality of opportunity and break down barriers faced by under-represented groups when entering the legal profession.

Professional QualificationsSolicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales

EXPERIENCE

  • Advising a US public corporation and its UK subsidiary in the industrial, aerospace and defence sector in connection with a self-report to the SFO concerning a multi-million dollar fraud and false accounting.
  • Advising an engineering, procurement and construction client on a large scale SFO investigation into bribery and corruption in a Nigerian liquefied natural gas project.
  • Advising a UK retail bank in connection with a large-scale Iranian and Cuban sanctions investigation and back book review, including advising on money laundering risks and tipping off.
  • Advising a client providing services to the gas & oil and power generation industries in connection with a deep-dive anti-corruption due diligence review and resultant internal investigation.
  • Advising a global property management company in connection with a wide-ranging internal investigation into suspected misconduct concerning its preferred supplier scheme.
  • Advising a management consulting company in connection with an FCA investigation into suspected market abuse, successfully achieving a result of no further action.
  • Successfully defending Thomas Kalaris in one of the UK’s largest fraud trials concerning Barclays’ capital raising and related payments to Qatar in 2008, resulting in acquittal on all charges in March 2020.
  • Advising one of the world’s largest retailers in connection with investigations into wide-ranging misconduct by a senior manager, fraud, false accounting and the timely recognition of supplier funding.
  • Advising the former Editor of the UK tabloid newspaper the News of the World in connection with the Leveson Inquiry and police investigations into allegations of phone hacking and conspiracy to commit misconduct in public office.
  • Advising numerous clients on compliance with the UK Bribery Act, including in the design and implementation of compliance programmes to ensure “adequate procedures” and advising on exposure under the UKBA arising from suspected misconduct.
Education
  • College of Law, Birmingham, Legal Practice Course, 2004
  • University of Leeds, Law LLB, 2003

Memberships And Affiliations

Laura Ford is a Solicitor registered with the Law Society of England & Wales

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