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Christine Cuthbert

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Christine is a special counsel in the Hong Kong disputes practice, specialising in corporate crime and investigations. She has over 10 years' experience in all forms of contentious work, including cross-border investigations and litigation, as well as other corruption-related matters. She has acted for clients in disputes with regulators and other parties, both through litigation and different forms of dispute resolution, including arbitration, mediation and complex negotiations. She previously worked for another top international firm in its offices in both Hong Kong and Australia.

We would like to invite you to join our webinar on 28 July 2021 as Baker McKenzie partners across various key jurisdictions provide an overview on the latest developments and trends impacting the AML landscape in Asia. Speakers from Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore will share updates on cross-border AML issues being faced across the region and their insights on managing this risk through compliance efforts.

On 24 June 2020, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) issued a circular on Carrying out the Follow-up Checks for the Rectification of Market Problems in the Banking and Insurance Sectors (the “Circular”). The CBIRC proposes to launch follow-up checks to review the steps taken to correct industry problems identified in the past three years following some high-profile cases, particularly in the areas of corporate governance, risk management and repeated violations of several laws and regulations.

Our alert sets out a brief summary of key “follow-up” checks outlined in the Circular and provides some practical tips that we have developed from our own experience on how companies can ensure their compliance programs satisfy the guidelines. More information can be found in our guide on 5 Essential Elements Of Corporate Compliance.

The Hong Kong National Security Law took effect on 30 June 2020. The 66-article law criminalizes four types of acts: secession, subversion of State power, terrorist activities, and collusion with foreign or external forces to endanger national security. It also stipulates the corresponding penalties, which in the most serious cases,…

On 30 June 2020, the Law of the People’s Republic of China on Safeguarding National Security in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (NSL) came into operation in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). Broadly speaking, the NSL criminalizes four types of acts: (1) secession, (2) subversion, (3) terrorist…

On 22 June 2020, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the convictions of two foreign nationals, Juan Angel Napout and Jose Maria Marin, former officials of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) and the Confederación Sudamericana de Fútbol (CONMEBOL), for conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud. The Second Circuit held that the use of US wire services could be sufficient in itself to confer US jurisdiction over foreign nationals in such prosecutions, even if the remainder of the fraudulent scheme took place outside of the US. 

In 2017, Napout and Marin were convicted of conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud (among other charges) after the jury found that they had accepted bribes from media and marketing companies in exchange for giving them broadcasting and marketing rights in connection with football tournaments under their control. In 2019, the pair jointly appealed their convictions, which the Second Circuit affirmed.

Whistle-blowers have been a prominent feature of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. From the medics across the globe who have blown the whistle on supply shortages, misleading information regarding effective treatments and risk measures, whistle-blowers have been a vital source of information during the pandemic. 

Companies have also been challenged with increasing numbers of whistle-blowing reports during this period in areas including fraud, corruption and harassment.  Although there is no comprehensive law in Hong Kong requiring companies to implement a whistleblowing policy and procedure, it is a best practice component to any compliance program and an essential tool to combat internal misconduct and to ensure compliance with laws and regulations.

On 1 June 2020, the corporate liability provision under Section 17A of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Act 2009 (the Act) is set to come into force. As highlighted in our earlier client alert (see Link), a company may be held criminally liable for acts of corruption by its directors, employees or other associated persons.