Civil Fraud, Asset Tracing
Russell – Owner, Deniliquin Freighters: “I’m the owner of Deniliquin Freighters Transfer Company based in the Riverina in New South Wales. It just seemed to me that we weren’t making the profits that we should have been making. We’d sort of employed a general manager…
Recover Stolen Assets
We provide strategic investigatory and legal advice, and representation to persons or organisations adversely affected by fraud, misconduct or financial crime.
Typical civil cases include matters concerning:
- Accounting fraud
- Asset tracing – domestic and international
- Breach of confidentiality
- Breach of directors’ duties
- Breach of trust
- Claims against related parties for knowing receipt and/or knowing assistance
- Cryptocurrency fraud
- Employee fraud
- Elder abuse (financial)
- Financial reporting fraud
- Fraud by fiduciaries
- Freezing Orders
- Inducing breach of contract
- Insurance fraud
- Invoice fraud
- Internet and eCommerce fraud
- Patent and copyright infringement
- Search Orders (including accepting appointment as independent solicitor)
- Trade secrets, including misappropriation of confidential information and data theft
- Unjust enrichment
- Whistleblower protection
Helping Victims of Fraud
We have acted in some of the largest and high profile asset recovery and other fraud cases in Australia. Our experience and dedication to securing asset recovery for fraud victims is beyond compare.
The key to any successful fraud case is identifying the difference between suspicion and evidence. There is no substitute for expertise and experience. One of our major strengths is that we can quickly identify and analyse available evidence and make timely decisions regarding the best strategies for moving forward decisively and with confidence.
We have very substantial experience assisting fraud victims to recover stolen assets and have a thorough understanding how to navigate the peculiar legal and factual complexities that may appear impassable ‘road blocks’ to a successful outcome.
We typically assist victims of fraud to obtain freezing orders and search orders to prevent assets being disposed of by culprits or their related parties, or the destruction of evidence. The founder and Principal of Duxton Hill, Andrew Tragardh, has successfully applied for more freezing orders and search orders than perhaps any other advocate in Australia.
The Importance of Triage
At the very first meeting we identify the key tasks and services required to procure the best outcome. In some cases, our fraud investigators will be tasked to obtain evidence so it can be assessed before decisions are made regarding further action and strategy. In other cases, our lawyers will immediately commence legal action. In all cases, decisions are made decisively, and with a clear understanding of strategy, costs and potential outcomes.
We identify the best time and circumstances to report fraud and can prepare a fraud report and liaise with police on your behalf, always acting with the highest level of discretion and sensitivity.
In most cases if asset recovery (getting your money back) is to be achieved taking swift civil action rather than reporting fraud to police is the only way to maximise your chances of securing a favourable result. Reporting to police or other law enforcement agencies is typically only recommended after asset recovery has been achieved following the conclusion of a civil proceeding.
We provide advice regarding insurance matters and assist clients to secure all the necessary information to make a successful claim.
Claims may be commenced against employees who have stolen company property, including customer lists, trade secrets or confidential information. If the person alleged to have perpetrated the fraud is an employee we provide advice concerning how to secure evidence from the employee, freeze their assets to maximise financial recovery, and when the time is right to terminate their employment without risk of an unfair dismissal claim.
When acting for corporates and individuals who are victims of fraud we typically obtain freezing orders.
Once known as a Mareva order, a freezing order is a Court order usually made without notice to the defendant which restrains a person or corporation from removing their assets in or outside Australia, or from disposing of, dealing with or diminishing the value of those assets.
Freezing orders can be made over the assets of a defendant or other persons or corporations who may hold the assets in which a defendant has an interest.
Our lawyers have a 100% success rate obtaining freezing orders.
When acting for corporates and individuals who are victims of fraud we typically obtain search orders. Search orders are often obtained in breach of confidence and employee fraud cases.
Once known as Anton Piller order, a search order is a Court order usually made without notice to the defendant which prevents a person or corporation from destroying evidence in their possession by permitting a search party (the plaintiff’s lawyers and other professionals) to enter business or residential premises and to seize evidence. Typically a search order will permit the imaging of all electronic devices and other electronic media.
Our lawyers have a 100% success rate obtaining search orders. With experience which is second to none in this area, we are also available for appointments by other law firms as independent (supervising) solicitor.
Our founder and Principal, Andrew Tragardh, has successfully applied for more freezing orders than perhaps any other advocate in Australia. In February 2019 he became the first barrister in Australia to obtain a freezing order and search order relating to cryptocurrency.
In Australia any person, organisation or entity is entitled to bring a private criminal prosecution against another party.
Traditionally a victim of crime would report the incident to police or other law enforcement agency, who would then conduct an investigation, obtain evidence including statements from witnesses, and arrest and interview suspects. The case would then be delivered to a state prosecutor (e.g. the DPP) who would determine whether the case had a reasonable prospect of success and that it was in the public interest to prosecute. Regrettably, as a result of funding constraints in public law enforcement, victims cannot always have confidence that matters will proceed in this way.
The alternative is a private prosecution. We provide this service. Before Andrew Tragardh founded Duxton Hill he was a barrister at the Victorian Bar and one of the barristers on the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions list of preferred counsel.
Examples of criminal wrongdoing that may be privately prosecuted are:
- Copyright theft
- Cyber-security breaches
- Money laundering
Private prosecutions will not be appropriate in all circumstances and civil remedies are often more suitable. A private prosecution does come with a number of benefits, the most significant being the protection of the corporate brand and deterrent effect of pursuing criminal wrongdoing. It also allows greater control over the proceeding – especially the speed which the investigation may be conducted.