United Kingdom: UK prosecutor loses battle against KBR over extra-territorial reach

The UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) was wrong to try and compel U.S. engineering, procurement and construction company KBR Inc to hand over documents held overseas during an investigation, the UK Supreme Court ruled on Friday.

In a judgment that deals a blow to the investigator and prosecutor’s abilities to gather overseas evidence, senior judges unanimously reversed a 2018 lower court ruling that so-called Section 2 notices could have extra-territorial reach.

“The presumption against extra-territorial effect clearly applies in this case because KBR Inc is not a UK company, and has never had a registered office or carried on business in the UK,” they said.

The SFO said Section 2 powers were fundamental to its ability to investigate multinationals with complex corporate structures, but that it welcomed the court’s clarification.

The original full article can be found at reuters.com

(Photo: Charlie Bibby/FT)

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