Allens

Experience

ASIC

  • Acting for Westpac in relation to an ASIC investigation, and related proceedings, of potential manipulation of the Bank Bill Swap Reference Rate, known as BBSW and the Australia Equivalent of LIBOR. The BBSW investigation was the largest investigation ASIC has ever conducted.
  • Acting for Macquarie Group in obtaining a stay of the conditions ASIC imposed on the financial services licences of a number of companies in the Macquarie Group. After proceedings in the AAT, we were successful in having the licence conditions removed by consent.
  • Advising Allianz in relation to ASIC's ongoing industry-wide review into the sale of add-on insurance products through motor dealers.
  • Acting for BT Financial Group, in connection with a high profile proceedings commenced by ASIC regarding the interpretation of key financial advice laws regarding the provision of superannuation services.
  • Acted for ANZ Wealth (Life Insurance) in response to ASIC notices about the handling of claims under life-insurance policies.
  • Acting for Macquarie Bank Limited in a complicated set of regulatory investigations, proceedings and class actions arising from the collapse of Storm Financial, including in defending two separate ASIC actions in the Federal Court.
  • Acting for a major accounting firm in relation to the ASIC investigation and subsequent enforcement proceedings arising from the collapse of the Westpoint Group of companies.
  • Acting for ANZ in relation to potential claims by the liquidators and regulatory issues arising from the collapse of Opes Prime, including an ASIC investigation.

ATO

  • Acting for multinationals across a range of sectors in transfer pricing investigations and audits conducted by the ATO.
  • Acting for a financial services client in relation to an investigation by the ATO into possible contraventions of the promoter penalty laws.
  • Advising on the scope and validity of section 264 notices and garnishee notices.

ACCC investigations / enforcement actions

  • Advising DuPont on Australian competition aspects including ACCC clearance of its proposed US$130+ billion all-stock merger of equals with The Dow Chemical Company.
  • Acted for Canada Pension Plan Investment Board / Global Infrastructure Partners in obtaining ACCC clearance of the AU$9+ billion takeover of ASX-listed Asciano Limited and the spin-out of Pacific National.
  • Acted for News Corp in obtaining ACCC clearance of its acquisition of Australian Regional Media from ASX-listed APN News & Media.
  • Advised Australia Post on competition law issues in the establishment of its global eCommerce joint venture with Aramex.
  • Advising nbn, the owner of the national broadband network, in connection with various inquiries into the regulatory framework underpinning telecommunications reform in Australia.
    • Acting in the ACCC investigations and subsequent proceedings for:
    • Coles for alleged unconscionable conduct in relation to certain suppliers;
    • Pfizer for alleged misuse of market power and exclusive dealing in relation to the supply of medicines to pharmacies;
    • Scoopon for alleged misleading and deceptive conduct and false and misleading representations to businesses and consumers;
    • PZ Cussons for an alleged 'hub & spoke' cartel conduct in relation to the supply of concentrated laundry detergents;
    • Emirates in relation to the alleged air cargo cartel and in the follow on class action; and
    • Amcor for an immunity application for alleged cartel conduct in the Australian corrugated box industry (with Visy) and the follow on class action.

AFP / ASIC

  • Advising CIMIC in a range of matters arising from allegations by the Australian Federal Police and ASIC of foreign bribery.
  • Advising AWB Limited (now Agrium Asia Pacific Limited) in regulatory investigations arising from the UN Oil-for-Food Programme and alleged sanctions breaches, as well as in relation to its defence and successful settlement of a related $150 million shareholder class action in the Federal Court of Australia alleging breaches of the continuous disclosure rules and misleading and deceptive conduct.
  • Acting for large public and private companies in relation to AFP and/or ASIC investigations and related civil litigation concerning alleges breaches of the Corporations.

AFP

  • Conducting an internal investigation for a major European multinational manufacturing company into potential corrupt conduct undertaken by a recently acquired subsidiary in Asia, leading to a voluntary disclosure to the Australian Federal Police.
  • Acting for clients in various sectors who are subject to investigations by the AFP under Federal and State anti-bribery laws.

APRA

  • Acting for a director for the Trustee of the AXA Australia Staff Superannuation Plan in responding to an APRA investigation, and in successfully opposing action taken by APRA.

AUSTRAC

  • Advising numerous clients on Anti-Money Laundering (AML) compliance issues, including responding to AUSTRAC recommendations where non-compliance with AML laws have been alleged.
  • Advising a large superannuation fund on dealings with AUSTRAC in relation to a full compliance assessment.

DFAT

  • Acting for clients engaging with DFAT on the application of sanctions laws, including advising in relation to disclosure of historic and current breaches in a transaction context.

Royal Commissions

  • Representing the Insurance Council of Australia Limited in relation to the 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission.
  • Acting for Seqwater, the owner and operator of the Wivenhoe and Somerset dams in Queensland, in the Queensland Flood Royal Commission, where it has assisted the Commission in understanding the key decisions taken during the major flood event in January 2011.