Serious Fraud Office | Property Freezing Order | Rosenblatt’s Financial Crime Team
26th November 2020
On 12th November 2020 the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) announced it has recovered £1.2m in a settlement with Julio Faerman in relation to a West London apartment, believed to have been partly purchased with criminal funds linked to systematic bribery in Brazil.
Serious Fraud Office Investigation | Rosenblatt’s Financial Crime Team
Under the terms of the settlement Faerman, a Brazilian national, agreed to pay £1,198,424.78 to the SFO plus £57,000 in costs in exchange for the lifting of a Property Freezing Order and Disclosure Order relating to 8 Tasker Lodge valued at £4.25m.
Faerman was implicated in ‘Operation Car Wash’, an investigation in Brazil which revealed bribery was used to win contracts from Brazil’s state oil company Petrobras. He admitted paying bribes to win contracts as an agent for Dutch company SBM Offshore NV, and is subject to a co-operation agreement with the Brazilian prosecuting authorities, having paid a settlement of around US$54m.
The SFO’s investigation focused on 8 Tasker Lodge and a number of Swiss bank accounts and offshore companies which it believed part-funded its purchase. It is believed the same accounts received payments gained by Faerman when he acted as agent for SBM Offshore NV.
In January 2019, the SFO secured the Property Freezing Order on 8 Tasker Lodge to prevent it being sold and a Disclosure Order to allow it to trace commissions paid to Faerman to facilitate bribes to his purchase of the property. In June 2020, Mrs Justice Cutts dismissed Faerman’s application to discharge the Disclosure Order, stating there was a clear and compelling public interest in maintaining it.
Liz Baker, Head of the Proceeds of Crime and International Assistance Division, said:
“This is an excellent result for the SFO, sending a clear message that we will not sit back and allow the United Kingdom to be a safe harbour for dirty money. We will continue to investigate, confiscate and recover criminal assets which are held on our shores.”
Rosenblatt can help
Rosenblatt has a wealth of experience in financial crime and is uniquely placed to support clients’ that are the subject of a Serious Fraud Office investigation and prosecution having being involved in high profile investigations into a global pharmaceuticals company, a multi-million pound affordable property investment scheme, a multi-million pound pension fraud scheme and a world leading global security company.