Regulatory and Financial Crime Investigations Lawyers in Hong Kong

Gall has the expertise to provide an all-encompassing professional service to help corporates and individuals navigate the relevant issues when faced with regulatory or financial crime-related investigations and to respond effectively to the challenges as they arise.

Our team of specialist lawyers has extensive experience dealing with the regulators and criminal investigators in Hong Kong (and elsewhere in the region), in particular the SFC, the HKMA, and the ICAC. We can assist at all stages throughout the regulatory investigation, as well as in any subsequent enforcement/disciplinary action.

We work to effectively and efficiently identify and respond to the relevant issues as they arise, wherever possible maintaining an open line of communication with the regulator/investigator with the aim of ensuring a swift resolution.

If you are involved in a regulatory or financial crime investigation, our team of specialist lawyers would be pleased to assist you.

Our team of lawyers are specialists in the following areas:

  • Acting as an interface with the police, investigators, and prosecuting authorities
  • Entering into plea bargaining for clients before or after charge
  • Conducting investigation and evidence gathering before trial
  • SFC and ICAC investigations
  • Acting to recover funds frozen in Hong Kong in respect of overseas investigations

Frequently asked questions

The SFC, through its Enforcement Division, conducts formal investigations in Hong Kong. In addition to its investigative powers, the SFC has wide ranging powers including to take disciplinary action against SFC licensed corporations and licensed representatives, to seek civil remedies (for example, injunctions and freezing orders), to initiate proceedings for market misconduct before the Market Misconduct Tribunal and to prosecute certain securities related offences (for example, insider dealing offences). The SFC’s investigation powers include requiring the production of documents (and to require an explanation in respect of the same), requiring persons to attend interviews and to require all reasonable assistance in respect of the investigation.

It is therefore imperative at an early stage to accurately identify the matter being investigated and to fully understand your rights and obligations regarding the investigation which our regulatory and financial crime investigations lawyers will help you with.

Yes – our regulatory and financial crime investigations lawyers report that the SFC’s powers to conduct dawn raids (i.e. an unannounced inspection of premises by the SFC) enable the SFC to gain entry to company premises and to conduct a search irrespective of whether or not the company is SFC licensed. Indeed, such a search could take place at a person’s residential premises.

Notwithstanding the surprise nature of a dawn raid, companies can take steps to be better prepared for a dawn raid should it occur, including devising a response protocol which identifies those persons in the firm with specific roles should a dawn raid ever occur.

Our regulatory and financial crime investigations lawyers report that the main financial services regulatory laws are:

  • Securities and Futures Ordinance – this is the main legislation governing the securities and futures markets and the non-bank leveraged foreign exchange market.
  • Banking Ordinance – the BO provides the framework for the supervision of banks in Hong Kong (together with certain guidelines and circulars issued by the HKMA).
  • Payment Systems and Stored Value Facilities Ordinance – Under the Ordinance, the HKMA is empowered to license and supervise the operation of stored value facilities and to regulate retail payment systems.
  • Insurance Ordinance – this is the principal legislation to regulate the insurance industry in Hong Kong. The Ordinance sets out the requirements for the authorisation / licensing, ongoing compliance and reporting obligations of insurers and insurance intermediaries.
  • Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Ordinance – This is the principal legislation that governs the administration and management of MPF schemes. The MPFSO also provides for the approval and control of persons as trustees of MPF schemes and the regulation of sales and marketing activities.
  • Companies Ordinance and Companies (Winding Up and Miscellaneous Provisions) Ordinance – The main legislation governing companies.

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