It is important to conduct a thorough investigation before any disciplinary action is taken. Safeguarding and preserving potential evidence is vital when investigating fraud in the workplace. Businesses should also consider implementing tighter financial controls and improving due diligence on employees to prevent future fraud.
Employee Fraud Investigations
Fraud is a serious concern for any business. From small-scale expenses fraud to million-pound embezzlement, fraud carries a heavy cost. Along with this is the potential for reputational damage that may follow a business for years. We work with clients cross a wide spectrum of business sectors to investigate alleged misconduct.
Case examples of our work
Assignment 1: Multi-million dollar pension fund fraud
A pension fund suspected its CEO of arranging kickbacks via hedge fund managers. The managers artificially elevated investment management fees in exchange for substantial monetary investments. The individual allegedly received cash and assets in excess of $200m via a complex web of offshore entities. The investigation undertook a review of hedge funds’ accounting records and reports. This determined the veracity of the allegations and value of the fraud.
Assignment 2: CEO expenses fraud & asset misappropriation
A NASDAQ-listed multinational corporation in the online retail industry suspected its CEO of defrauding the company by submitting false invoices. We forensically imaged the individual’s company computer. The team then reviewed the recovered documents in conjunction with invoices allegedly submitted by suppliers. We identified several false invoices which had been submitted to the company’s finance department and which had been created on the CEO’s computer. The investigation also revealed ghost employees, unauthorised suppliers, missing equipment and intellectual property theft. The client commenced criminal and civil proceedings against the CEO.
Assignment 3: Covert investigation into alleged kickbacks
A large construction company received allegations of an employee offering kickbacks on construction contracts via the company’s whistleblower hotline. To avoid arousing suspicion, the client wanted a covert investigation into the employee’s activities to determine if the allegations were true. We compiled a profile of the individual through forensic imaging of the individual’s company laptop and mobile phone. We carried out an analysis of the recovered documents and logged phone calls, and the individual’s employment was subsequently terminated.
Advice on fraud and investigations
Our expertise and training allows us to thoroughly investigate matters while adhering to the regulatory and legal requirements of the relevant jurisdictions. If you would like to speak to Opus about our employee fraud investigations, please contact our Partner, Nicholas Parton.
Shareholder dispute requires independent valuation
“My client was involved in a shareholder dispute in the online ticketing industry and needed a valuation prepared in order to inform its settlement decisions ahead of a without prejudice meeting, and to provide us with ammunition to use during negotiations. Nicholas responded quickly to the brief and let us have a number of options as to how to approach the valuation. As a result of that we asked Nicholas to prepare two valuations at different points in time in order to effectively demonstrate both (1) the losses that our client had suffered as a result of the counterparty’s conduct; and (2) the current valuation of the company. Nicholas prepared the report on time and on budget. He clearly explained the basis of his valuations so that we were able to put across persuasive points during the negotiations, and he was on hand to assist us when new facts arose during the negotiations. The matter successfully settled some time after the initial without prejudice meeting, and I would not hesitate to use him again in the future”