On 28 April 2014, the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (the “SFO”) announced the opening of a criminal investigation into possible money laundering arising from suspicions of corruption in Ukraine. The SFO is the government department responsible for investigating and prosecuting serious and complex fraud and corruption in the UK.
In connection with the investigation, the SFO obtained a restraint order freezing approximately $23 million of assets in the UK. For reasons of confidentiality, no further details were disclosed. Criminal legislation provides for the freezing of UK property at the request of a foreign country.