Frances Murray is a partner in the fraud and criminal litigation team.

Frances was called to the bar in 2008 and subsequently cross qualified as a solicitor in 2011 after spending the entirety of her career at a white collar boutique firm in the City.  She was the head of the firm’s London offices and practised predominantly in the areas of financial crime and serious crime.

Frances co-founded the Financial Crime department for an international City firm in September 2019. She represents individuals, sole traders, limited companies and PLCs from the investigatory stage to Crown Court proceedings. This includes high net worth and ultra-high net worth individuals, chief executive officers of multi-million pound, multi-national City-based companies, and professionals in law, medicine, journalism and accountancy.

Frances has defended investigations / prosecutions brought by the Serious Fraud Office, Financial Conduct Authority, HM Revenue and Customs, National Crime Agency, Architects Registration Board and the Crown Prosecution Service, as well as those prosecutions brought privately.

Frances joined Russell-Cooke in May 2022.

Notable Cases

  • Defended a national Funeral Plan Provider in Account Freezing Order proceedings, resulting in the successful release of frozen funds
  • Represented a Cryptocurrency exchange being investigated by international authorities for alleged financial crime offences
  • NCA investigation: defended ex-Premier of an overseas Country in Account Freezing Order proceedings linked to allegations of bribery and corruption, resulting in the successful release of the frozen funds
  • Instructed on behalf of an Australian fund focused on investment in the mining sector to provide anti-money laundering/terrorism advice
  • Instructed in relation to a nine-handed Conspiracy to Defraud being investigated by the Metropolitan Police in relation to a sports algorithm boiler room scam with associated HMRC enquiries
  • Instructed on behalf of a £2 billion turnover National Petroleum company to conduct an internal investigation in relation to fraud committed by their Finance Director
  • (Operation Maplin) Instructed on behalf of Director/corporate entity in relation to a high value Conspiracy to Cheat the Public Revenue (and associated fraud/tax offences) in relation to red diesel investigated by HMRC (associated contested Account Freezing Order and Production Order proceedings)
  • Instructed on behalf of a High Value Art Dealer to provide NFT Advice (in the UK and US) in relation to Banksy art works
  • GDPR Claim: instructed on behalf of a Financial Analyst/Dividend Forecaster (one of only 8 in the World) and former employee of a Global blue chip company in relation to serious cross jurisdictional GDPR breaches
  • Successful completion of an investigation exonerating the relative of a Jordanian billionaire and the third-youngest billionaire in the Middle East of any wrongdoing in relation to criminal allegations following a misreporting by a tabloid newspaper
  • Instructed on behalf of the former CEO of an international Super Yacht business investigated for Financial Crime offences committed in Austria
  • Instructed to provide Financial Crime advice in relation to a Worldwide Freezing Order concerning companies/individuals involved in the diamond trade with links to a billionaire businessman recently convicted/due to be imprisoned for bribery and corruption offences
  • Instructed by an Ultra High Net Worth family resident in China following allegations of money laundering in the UK
  • Instructed on behalf of an international CBD oil business to advise on FCA regulation/Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 in relation to proposed pre-IPO placing, followed by an IPO on the AIM Market of the London Stock Exchange
  • UK Research and Innovation Counter Fraud team investigation: instructed on behalf of a company Director in relation to grants received from InnovateUK, a government funded agency, in relation to three scientific research projects
  • SFO investigation: Represented a Global leader in the legal services sector in relation to a section 2 notice served by the SFO following an investigation into a world leading global security company
  • (Project Hubble) Instructed on behalf of husband and wife in relation to a high value income tax fraud investigated by HMRC
  • (Operation Necker and Operation Bandiera) Instructed on behalf of husband and wife in relation to a £100m Conspiracy to Cheat the Public Revenue/advisory on undeclared tax (pre Code of Practice 9) and associated cash seizure proceedings investigated by HMRC
  • (Operation Corniche) Instructed on behalf of the Director of a corporate entity in relation to a multi-million pound duty evasion case and associated cash seizure proceedings (HMRC v Mann [2021] EWHC 1182 (Admin)) investigated by HMRC
  • Represented a professional in the property sector being investigated by the Serious Fraud Office for their involvement in an international, multi-million pound affordable property investment scheme
  • Represented senior figures of an international pharmaceutical company interview under section 2 by the Serious Fraud Office
  • Represented individuals in the UK and overseas interviewed under section 2 by the Serious Fraud Office in relation to a multimillion pound pension investment scheme fraud
  • Operation Dover: Inner London Crown Court, acquittal following Prosecution for high-value credit card fraud
  • International Private Prosecution: Southwark Crown Court, complex trade marks and fraud case
  • Operation Foremark: Million pound insurance and mortgage fraud representing an Orthopaedic Surgeon
  • Operation Wintergreen: Southwark Crown Court, multi-million pound carbon credit fraud
  • Operation Tidworth: Southwark Crown Court, multi-million pound international boiler room fraud prosecuted by the Financial Conduct Authority
  • Operation Greenking: £44m payroll service fraud prosecuted by HM Revenue and customs together with Essex and Kent Police at Wood Green Crown Court
  • Cash seizure proceedings: secured the release of over £220,000 from the Serious Organised Crime Command of the Met Police following a detailed application and forensic analysis of company accounts
  • Operation Spinnaker: Multi-million pound publishing fraud prosecuted by Trading Standards at Nottingham Crown Court
  • Operation Spallation: A multi-handed HM Revenue & Customs corruption case prosecuted at the Central Criminal Court
  • Operation Savate: Multi-million pound VAT fraud involving an abuse of the Construction Industry Scheme
  • Represented the former owner of London Welsh Rugby Club in relation to allegations of fraud
  • Complex advance fee fraud involving the sale of oil stocks/jet fuel in Saudi Arabia
  • Successfully achieved the release of a substantial amount of cash seized by the authorities at a UK port
  • Operation Tulipbox: £38m Carbon Credit MTIC Fraud
  • Operation Vex: £85m Mobile phone MTIC fraud
  • Operation Blackout: International importation of counterfeit goods
  • Operation Thebe: International importation of adulterants (Benzocaine)
  • Operation Ghast: Southwark Crown Court, £21 million mobile telephone MTIC Fraud
  • Operation Hayrick: Multi-million pound Confiscation Proceedings deriving from an MTIC fraud
  • Operation Russo: Prosecution at Harrow Crown Court of a multi-million-pound mortgage fraud involving Britain’s biggest ever con-woman

Proceeds of Crime / Confiscation Cases and Cash Seizure & Forfeiture:

  • Undertook work on Proceeds of Crime / Confiscation cases, Restraint Orders, Civil Asset Recovery and Cash Seizure
  • Proceedings due to knowledge and experience of the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002
  • Instructed in relation to cash seizure and cash forfeiture cases, servicing the national client base in relation to such cases
  • Regularly gave instructions to formulate and present applications under sections 297 and 301 of POCA 2002 and has experience of conducting numerous such cases at Courts all over England & Wales
  • Solicitor, England and Wales
  • Member of the Honourable Society of Gray's Inn
  • Member of the Fraud Lawyers' Association (FLA)
  • Members of the Proceeds of Crime Lawyers' Association (POCLA)
  • Member of the Female Fraud Forum (FFF)
  • Member of Women in Criminal Law (WICL)

What the Legal Directories say (recognition since 2014):

Chambers & Partners | 2021 Edition:

UK – POCA Work & Asset Forfeiture – UK wide: Associates to watch

Frances Murray has notable experience in fraud and post-conviction POCA proceedings. “Frances is a dedicated lawyer who goes the extra mile for her clients. Clients really appreciate her expertise in confiscation orders.”

Chambers & Partners | 2020 Edition:

Frances Murray has experience handling fraud and post-conviction POCA proceedings. A source enthuses: “She is one of my favourite solicitors to work with because she is likeable, firm and always well prepared.”

Legal 500 | 2019 Edition:

Frances Murray is known for her ‘ability to manage document heavy cases’, ‘diligence in pursuing lines of enquiry’ and ‘client care.'

Frances Murray, who is ‘a hard-working and solid lawyer’ who ‘stays calm no matter what the pressure is in a case.’

Frances Murray is ‘tenacious in her quest to achieve the best possible outcome for her clients and commands the respect of clients and opponents alike.'