29 Oct 2012 | 10:01 am | 1 min. read
• An incentive for corporates to clear skeletons out of the closet The UK Government’s proposals for US-style Deferred Prosecution Agreements (DPAs) announced today should provide a powerful weapon in the fight against white collar crime, says Pinsent Masons, the international law firm.
DPAs act as a plea bargain, and will allow companies to publicly admit past wrong-doing while paying penalties, undertaking internal reforms, or agreeing to external monitoring, in exchange for immunity from prosecution (unless they breach the terms of the DPA).
Barry Vitou, Partner and white collar crime expert at Pinsent Masons comments: “DPAs offer a better way of dealing with corporate wrongdoing and for businesses to resolve their criminal exposure. The present choice, either to prosecute, or not, is deeply unsophisticated.”
“The potential upside for ethical corporations is clear - hand over the bad apples themselves and corporates could avoid multi-million pound fines and public trials – with all the extremely damaging publicity that brings with it.”
“If DPAs can be implemented properly then the SFO could benefit from a dividend as businesses clear the skeletons out of the closet and come forward about past crimes that they have uncovered.”
Barry Vitou continues: “The SFO is under pressure to perform but to do that it needs the tools to do the job properly – DPAs should go a long way to help.”
“DPAs also have the advantage of penalising companies, enabling swifter restitution and rehabilitation, and reducing the risks to innocent directors, employees, and stakeholders.”
The Ministry of Justice hopes that DPAs will incentivise self-reporting for two reasons:
Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised Wesleyan Assurance Society on its sale of Wesleyan Bank Limited and subsidiaries to Hampshire Trust Bank plc, subject to regulatory approval.
Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised Malaysian utility, TNB and Vantage RE, its UK/European arm, on its acquisition of a 49% stake in the offshore wind farm company Blyth Offshore Demonstrator Limited (BODL) from EDF Renewables.
Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons has advised the UK government on its contracts for the purchase of significant volumes of two novel, Covid-19 specific, antivirals.
Multinational law firm Pinsent Masons advised GNA Biosolutions GmbH on IP and commercial aspects of its rapid PCR Covid-19 test.
Pinsent Masons has advised Unbound on its investment in etone Motion Analysis GmbH (VAHA), a manufacturer of smart digital mirrors.
The multinational law firm Pinsent Masons advises the holding company of the founder Dr Hardy Walle on the sale of all shares of Bodymed AG to Nestlé Health Science.
For all media enquiries, including arranging an interview with one of our spokespeople, please contact the press office on