- Barry Vitou and Anne-Marie Ottaway taking their practices to 600-lawyer HWF
- Vitou co-led Greenberg Traurig’s global white collar defense and special investigations group
- Ottaway is an ex-prosecutor with the UK’s Serious Fraud Office
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(Reuters) – Holman Fenwick Willan is expanding its white collar defense and investigations capabilities with a pair of lawyers from Greenberg Traurig, including a global practice group leader, the London-founded firm said Monday.
Barry Vitou, global co-chair of Greenberg Traurig’s white collar defense and special investigations practice, has joined HFW alongside Anne-Marie Ottaway, a former investigator and prosecutor at the UK’s Serious Fraud Office. Vitou also headed the London white collar practice at Greenberg Traurig.
HFW is a 600-lawyer firm that has offices globally. The self-described “sector-focused” firm lists aerospace, energy, commodities, insurance and reinsurance, construction and shipping as sector areas on its website. HFW also recently launched a standalone consulting business.
Jeremy Shebson, managing partner of HWF, in a statement touted Vitou and Ottaway’s “formidable track record of handling investigations and defending clients in high-profile cases.”
“We expect this to be a busy area, with the pandemic and consequent market shocks leading to an increase in regulatory investigations and prosecutions,” Shebson said.
Vitou has seesawed between London- and U.S.-founded law firms over the past decade. He launched Greenberg Traurig’s London-based white collar practice when he joined the firm in May 2018 from Pinsent Masons, a London-founded global firm where he build the white collar practice. He previously practiced at Winston & Strawn, among other firms.
Ottaway also was at Pinsent Masons before heading to Greenberg Traurig in October 2018. She worked in the UK fraud office for 13 years before that.
“HFW has an outstanding client base – particularly across its core sectors – and shares our aspiration to create a marquee practice for big-ticket white-collar work,” Vitou said in a statement.
The pair advise companies and individuals on matters involving economic crime, including compliance, investigations and prosecutions that relate to fraud, bribery, insider dealing and money laundering, according to HFW. They counsel clients on law enforcement investigations globally, including those under investigation by UK and U.S. agencies and prosecutors, the firm said.
A Greenberg Traurig representative said the firm wishes Vitou and Ottaway well.