AVER LEX is a market leading white-collar crime boutique law firm in Ukraine focused on high-profile economic crimes and politically motivated prosecutions. Notably, this versatile team comes highly acclaimed among corporate clients, both local and foreign business. The team is known for its long-lasting representation of ex-president of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, in an unprecedented large-scale case with numerous proceedings and episodes. The team has also been newly retained on a number of sophisticated and challenging representations of high-level public officials, such as Yaroslav Dubnevych, a member of the Ukrainian Parliament, in criminal proceedings initiated by the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU) on charges of grand misappropriation of PJSC Ukrzaliznytsia’s funds during procurement for the supply of spare parts; Igor Nasalyk, former Minister of Energy and Coal Industry, in criminal proceedings on a declaration of false information; Igor Pogribnichenko, judge of the Kyiv District Administrative Court, within criminal proceedings on suspicion of committing crimes against justice and abusing power. The firm is also proficient in criminal cases within corporate conflicts and hostile takeovers, cybercrime and corporate investigations. Amongst resonant cases is defending the interests of Mykhailo Cheperdak, a shareholder of PJSC Institute of Oil Transportation (IOT), one of the largest oil refining companies in Ukraine and the CIS, in criminal proceedings related to a hostile takeover of the company. Another area of growth is sanctions advisory and exclusion from the foreign sanction lists. Vitaliy Serdyuk, one of the most recognized attorneys in Ukraine, heads the defense counsel group in resonant landmark proceedings. Olga Prosyanyuk, managing partner, continually expands her portfolio with the most challenging cases. Igor Fedorenko handles high-stake WCC matters. Artem Drozdov took over leadership in a number of economic and corporate crime matters. Criminal attorneys Bogdan Bilenko, Andriana Fozekosh and ­Volodymyr Enich are other important members of the team.

Full-service Ukrainian law firm Asters makes up one of the largest specialized white-collar crime teams in Ukraine, which also includes an anti-corruption compliance group. Its practice focuses on business crimes, business security and anti-corruption compliance, and is highly experienced in representing high-profile individuals and major companies in domestic and international criminal investigations as well as internal inquiries. The team is active in handling defense in politically-motivated prosecutions. For example, the firm currently represents Boris Lozhkin, businessman and former head of the  Presidential Administration, in a criminal case on false allegations of money laundering in the course of the sale of a business in 2013; represents TAS group in criminal proceedings on allegations related to the purchase of a business, the Kuznya na Rybalskomu shipyard in Kyiv. In 2019 the team advised high-profile officials in cases related to the recently introduced compulsory e-declaration system, assisted with internal anti-corruption investigations and has been instructed to advise foreign state authorities on local law issues. Sergiy Grebenyuk, partner, is noted for his deep involvement in sophisticated representations. Orest Stasiuk, promoted to counsel, is another core team member.

In 2019, EQUITY’s criminal defense practice continued resonant representations of officials from the government sector and business leaders. Among the most resonant public cases was the defense of Odesa city mayor Hennadiy Trukhanov, who figures in cases where he is suspected of embezzlement of communal property. The team also defends the interests of top Ukrainian officials and high net worth individuals, including Volodymyr Omelyan (ex-Minister of Infrastructure), Roman Nasirov (former Head of State Fiscal Service), Dmytro Kryuchkov (former Member of Parliament), etc. The sizeable team working on white-collar crime projects is led by active partners Taras Poshyvanyuk, Oleksandr Lysak, Vyacheslav Krahlevych. Yaroslav Zeikan, a luminary of criminal law and process in Ukraine, added weight to the practice through his reputation.

VB PARTNERS is a national boutique law firm specializing in white-collar crime and dispute resolution. The firm is known for consistently representing top managers and shareholders of various banks both at national and international levels in criminal proceedings, including those on the facts of asset misappropriation, abuse of office, money laundering, tax evasion and representation in judicial proceedings related to bringing the management and owners of bankrupt banks to subsidiary liability, brought by the state-run Deposit Guarantee Fund and the depositors of banks. In a recent highlight the team renders representation of a shareholder and managers of Commercial Bank Khreschatyk in criminal proceedings on embezzlement — misuse of bank’s funds; acts for the interests of Mriya Agro Holding in criminal proceedings in respect of misappropriation by its former owners and officials of the credit funds of ERSTE Bank in a fraudulent manner and in an especially large amount. Renowned Ukrainian criminal defense attorney Denys Bugay, partner, heads the practice. Another partner, Oleksandr Lukianenko, is noted for his impressive activity over the past year. Denys Shkarovsky and Nikita Nuralin are the key team members.

Sayenko Kharenko has boosted its criminal law practice with merger with Solodko & Partners, a criminal defense boutique firm renowned for defending publicly exposed persons. The amalgamated sizeable practice guides clients through all kinds of investigations, enforcement actions, and compliance issues. In 2019 the firm oversaw several complex parallel proceedings involving simultaneous civil and criminal actions. Selected highlights include representing Philip Morris Ukraine in criminal proceeding in relation to allegations of possible tax evasion of UAH 635 million worth of additional customs payments; representing one of Ukraine’s largest taxpayers in criminal proceedings in relation to allegations of possible tax evasion of USD 100 million; advising Porsche Ukraine Group companies on criminal law issues; representing the interests of a client in criminal proceedings relating to the unlawful appropriation of funds totaling USD 45 million in connection with a pre-trial investigation; representing Oshadbank in criminal proceeding relating to misappropriation and embezzlement. The team represents Nataliya Bernatska, Former First Deputy Minister of Justice in criminal proceeding on facts of malpractice. The sizeable white-collar criminal defense team is led by partners Sergey Pogrebnoy, Sergiy Smirnov and Yevgeniy Solodko. Counsel Zlata Simonenko, associates Igor Voronov, Volodymyr Adonin and Yevhen Myroshnykov are important team members. Ario Dehghani, counsel, is the main expert in compliance.

GOLAW has been actively protecting business from unwarranted criminal prosecution and arbitrary interference in legitimate commercial activity. The team acted on cases involving seizure and legalization of state funds, abuse of official position, fraud, fraudulent takeover of property, tax evasion, suspicions of financing of terrorism. The firm is retained by many corporate clients and is especially popular among foreign investors in Ukraine. The practice has two partners on board. Igor Glushko is head of the criminal and white-collar defense practice. Angelika ­Moisieieva is recognized for her vast practical experience of defending individuals in criminal prosecution, along with representation of the interests of victims in criminal proceedings.

ARIO Law Firm criminal practice demonstrates growing experience in resonant and difficult cases. The team possesses in-depth expertise and extensive experience in investigating business activities, official crimes, crimes related to private property and other crimes related to the business activities of clients. In 2019, the team as represented by partners Julian Khorunzhyi, Yevhen Hrushovets and Ruslan Sydorovych, defended the interests of Lviv mayor Andriy Sadovy before the Appeals Chamber of the Supreme Anti-Corruption Court, in criminal proceedings related to the construction of an industrial park in Lviv. Other clients of the firm include politicians, Members of the Verkhovna Rada and local councils, officials, well-known human rights activists, as well as corporate clients.

Barristers attorneys at law retained its deep focus on protecting political leaders, Members of the Ukrainian Parliament and state officials (both current and former) in criminal prosecutions. During the period under research, this sizeable team handled dozens of resonant politically-motivated cases. The firm also has a raft of corporate clients facing criminal investigations. Criminal defense attorneys Denys PonomarenkoKostiantyn Hloba, Oleksiy Shevchuk, Andrii Levkovets, Illia Novikov, Oleksandr Shadrin, Oleksandr Tananakin are named among the most active individuals on the Ukrainian legal market.

Arzinger’s white-collar crime team has an extensive practice on providing representation to companies with foreign investments from different economic sectors (agri and food, pharma, banking, timber processing, construction companies, etc.), to its top management as well as to private clients in criminal proceedings. The firm continues to demonstrate diverse practice, and includes cases related to extortion and misappropriation of property, abuse of office, fraud, theft, embezzlement, tax evasion. Partner Kateryna Gupalo heads the white-collar crime practice, and also deals with complex litigation, cross-border cases, represents her clients before international investigative authorities, including Interpol.

Ukrainian dispute resolution heavyweight Ilyashev & Partners actively expands its criminal law practice in the field of white-collar and other crimes. The firm provides legal advice regarding regulatory offenses, fraud and money laundering cases, takeover of criminal proceedings from abroad, extradition support, legal support of cyber-crime cases, appeals against decisions of law-enforcement agencies. Recent significant projects of note include supporting international criminal prosecution and extradition of former top managers of BTA Bank (Kazakhstan), as well as supporting criminal cases in Ukraine against former senior managers of BTA Bank. The firm also protects the interests of the group of companies Rostok Holding, its beneficiary and officials within the framework of criminal proceedings on fraud charges; protect the interests of an official of Smila Energo Invest in a high-profile criminal trial, which opened in connection with the breakdown of the 2017-2018 heating season in Smila, Cherkasy Region. The team represents the interests of V. Muiznieks and LU Invest (Latvia) as victims and civil claimants in criminal proceedings on the grounds of a criminal offense — misappropriation, embezzlement of property or seizing of property through abuse of official position. Another finalized case in 2019 was protection of interests of the employees of Group DF companies in criminal proceeding over the embezzlement of property of Nadra Bank through abuse of official position. Other important members of the sizeable team are Yevgen Solovyov, Galyna Lefor, Denys Nienov, Mykola Burtovyi, Kostiantyn Kryvenko, Lesya Samarina, Andriy Lytvyn. The team is supervised by two partners, Mikhail Ilyashev and Roman Marchenko.

Alekseev, Boyarchukov and Partners strengthened its white-collar crime and business defense practice after merging with Stolychniy Advocate law firm. Partner Kostyantyn Rybachkovskiy leads the practice. Among the practice’s dozens of clients are well-known political figures, members of the Ukrainian Parliament, state officials, officials of banks and private companies.

Skliarenko, Sydorenko and Partners has extensive practice of fraud criminal cases and of conducting cases of tax evasion, fictitious entrepreneurship, fraud, taking of property, raider takeovers of enterprises, money laundering, abuse of authority, bribery, non-enforcement of court decisions. The team represents the former Consul General of Georgia in Odesa in criminal proceedings on alleged misappropriation of budget funds and abuse of power; the head of the debt recovery department of one of the largest Ukrainian banks in criminal proceedings on alleged bribery charges; representing a former director and the first deputy director of a communal enterprise engaged in repair and maintenance of auto infrastructure in criminal proceedings on the alleged illegal occupation of a land plot. Partners Andriy Sydorenko and Andriy Trigub are the firm’s core practitioners.

Kharkiv-based Shkrebets & Partners focuses on representing Members of Parliament, municipal and state officials as well as corporate clients and their officials in a wide range of criminal proceedings related to WCC. Their clients include Ukrainian politician and businessman Petro Dyminsky and former MP Nadia Savchenko. The team is led by renowned partner Oleksii Meniv.

A significant part of the criminal practice of Sokolovskyi & Partners is protection in criminal proceedings under tax evasion. During the period under research, the team provided clients with legal assistance in tax evasion cases and proceedings related to crimes in the field of economic activity, violation of safety rules during the performance of work with increased danger. The practice is led by Tetiana Lysovets, senior partner.

Vdovychen & Partners, as led by Oleg Vdovychen, is traditionally active in various criminal issues. The spectrum of representations takes in fraud, theft, tax evasion, appeals against property arrests and property seizure. Selected significant cases include protection of the interests of bank officials in criminal proceedings on the fact of embezzlement; protection of client interests within the framework of criminal proceedings on the fact of tax evasion; comprehensive defense of the client and the client’s officials from criminal prosecution in several criminal proceedings on alleged theft of state property.

The ADER HABER white-collar crime practice, as lead by Eleonora Salova, senior associate, combines protection of business owners and top management from criminal prosecution, representation of victims and suspects in criminal proceedings, enforcement of decisions on temporary access, interrogations, provision of the return of seized property during searches and protection from hostile takeovers. Recent highlights of the team’s work include removing a client from Interpol’s wanted list in a criminal prosecution with a potential amount of alleged losses of EUR 78 million; removal of seizure from company property and return of more than 300 units of computer equipment after a search in an IT company.

Odesa-based AS Legal handled defense of the head of a utility company in criminal proceeding on illegal transfer of private property as municipal for the benefit of a private individual; defended the founder of a road construction company in criminal proceeding which started after a commercial dispute in the form of a counterparty making accusations. Diana Yakovleva acts as practice head.

Ante Law Firm handled some matters related to white-collar crime in the fields of aviation and pharmaceuticals. Andriy Guck, managing partner, is the team leader.

AVELLUM acts on several criminal investigations, and represents victims of internal and external fraud in Ukraine, including in cases involving a local business partners and employees of foreign companies. The team represents Uber B.V. in dealings with Ukrainian law-enforcement, tax, and road traffic authorities. AVELLUM assisted a client to handle numerous inquiries and document requests made by Ukrainian law-enforcement and tax authorities in the course of pre-trial investigations. Andriy Fortunenko focuses on global investigations, and white-collar crime. Vadim Medvedev, head of dispute resolution, is the key contact.

The Kyiv office of Baker McKenzie handles representation before law-enforcement authorities in Ukraine with respect to various issues related to criminal proceedings against legal entities and officials. Recent cases encompassed proceedings with regard to alleged forgery and abuse of office, misappropriation of state funds, tax evasion. The practice group is headed by dispute resolution partner Ihor Siusel.

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang Ukraine provides assistance on embezzlement, forgery, bribery, identity theft, money laundering. Over the last year, the team has had several white-collar defense/investigation cases and all involved well-known multinational companies. It also developed and delivered a series of extensive training sessions on the American FCPA and the UK Bribery Act for the partners of its long-standing clients.

Being empowered by its international presence, the Kyiv office of DLA Piper handles complex, high-stake multijurisdictional compliance and investigation matters. The firm represents companies, their shareholders and boards of directors, as well as individual corporate leaders in white-collar crime investigations and prosecutions involving allegations of fraud, tax evasion, corruption and other business, as well as financial offences. The dedicated practice group assists in key areas of regulatory focus, such as money laundering and anti-corruption, including under the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, UK Bribery Act statutes and regulations. The firm recently represented a global pharmaceuticals company in criminal proceedings regarding abuse of authority by officials of the State Enforcement Service (Bailiffs) in Ukraine. It also handles representation of a professional services company in alleged professional misconduct involving several jurisdictions. In 2019, the team was strengthened by associates Tetiana Kolha and Artem Krykun-Trush, who currently focuses on white-collar crime, compliance and global investigations’ sub-practice. Partner Olga Vorozhbyt heads the litigation and regulatory practice.

Established in May 2019, GRACERS is a new and rapidly grown white-collar crime boutique. The team, as lead by Serhii Lysenko, managing partner, is involved in many resonant criminal proceedings. The dedicated team gained a remarkable following among owners, top managers, private and corporate clients in cases involving fraud, embezzlement, misappropriation, etc.

Gramatskiy & Partners boosted its criminal practice portfolio in 2019. The team, which is acting through two units, business protection led by Oleksandr Koval, and criminal defense headed by Mykola Voitovich, represents corporate entities during searches and investigative actions, interrogations, answering inquiries from investigative authorities. Most instructions were devoted precisely to the criminal law protection of clients’ officials and employees in various economic criminal proceedings. The firm is often enlisted for representation in the course of financial investigations carried out by the tax authorities.

Over the course of last year Jurline continued to strengthen its criminal practice, while remaining one of the leaders in Southern Ukraine. The Odesa-based team possesses experience in protecting the interests of clients in the area of crimes against life and health of persons, crimes against property, crimes in the sphere of commercial activity, as well as in the field of official activities (malfeasance in office). In addition, the firm has positive court practice in issues related to illegal seizure of property and bank accounts of customers by law-enforcement officers with subsequent removal of these seizures and the return of property to their owners. Major clients in 2019 are TIS-Grain, LLC Transinvestservice, Kadorr Group, LLC Vesta. Partner Maxim Kapelist heads the practice.

ID Legal Group provides tax advisory and criminal defense services for tax offenses. Oleg Dobrovolskyi is named the responsible partner.

This past year Juscutum’s white-collar crime team was reinforced with the arrival of new partner Volodymyr Rudnychenko[1] from INTEGRITES and a group of associates. The team focuses on cases evolving tax evasion, bribery and corruption, abuse of power, fraud, misappropriation of funds. Recent clients include The Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority, Boryspil International Airport, Atlasjet Ukraine, and several individual state officials and top managers.

The Kyiv office of Kinstellar defends Ukrainian high net worth individuals and corporate clients in economic and financial crime cases in Ukraine and abroad. The team’s focus is cases involving bribery, fraud, money laundering, theft. The firm advises Mr. Andrey Adamovskiy, a Ukrainian high net worth individual, in a dispute which arose in the course of the dissolution of Oledo Group in 2009, having resulted in a high-value dispute after the sale of VikOil (the principal cash flow generating asset of Oledo Group) to global joint venture TNK-BP, advising, among others, on the allegations made by the opposing party on illegal misappropriation of assets and committing of other crimes by representatives of the client. The firm also represents another Ukrainian high net worth individual in connection with the criminal investigation initiated by the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine, which involves officials of one state-owned bank and officials of a large agricultural group, which was owned by the client. Kostiantyn Likarchuk, Kyiv office managing partner and head of the dispute resolution practice firm-wide, leads the practice.

Prominent in taxation, KM Partners have profound experience in the defense of clients in criminal proceedings on tax evasion. More than 20 criminal proceedings were closed at the pre-trial investigation stage. KM Partners are pioneers on the issue of appealing the legality of court rulings on the appointment of a tax audit delivered by investigating judges. Partner Alexander Minin is the key contact.

Kharkiv-based Krolevetskyi & Partners provides legal assistance to both individuals and officials of large state-owned production enterprises and state authorities in criminal proceedings on alleged misappropriation and abuse of power at the stage of pre-trial investigation and court proceedings; accompanies clients during investigative actions and other legal proceedings. Illia Tkachenko heads the practice.

In 2019 Legal Alliance Company, which is focused on the pharmaceuticals and healthcare sector, extended its white-collar crime practice. Recent cases took in legal support of a client in criminal proceedings regarding falsification, the organization of embezzlement; protecting the interests of an IT company, a leading developer of logistics software, in a criminal case of unauthorized access to automated systems. The team also represented a manufacturer in a transnational criminal case involving drug fraud. The practice is led by Illya Kostin and Taras Bezpaly.

Sheverdin & Partners represents state officials and high net worth individuals during investigations, interrogations and procedural actions. In 2019 the firm represented a regional department of a state authority in the field of defense in proceedings on charges for misappropriation of USD 6 million worth of land. Maksym Sheverdin leads the practice.[2]

[1] In February 2020 he joined the Asset Recovery and Management Agency.

[2] In April 2020 the firm merged with LCF Law Group.