Ashley Collins


Associate, London

Ashley Collins


Associate, London

Ashley Collins is an associate in Cohen & Gresser’s London office. She is a member of the firm’s White Collar Defense & Regulation and Litigation & Arbitration practice groups.

Ashley’s practice focuses on criminal and regulatory proceedings, internal investigations, trade and economic sanctions, and commercial disputes.

Ashley has significant experience of trial advocacy, pre-trial negotiation, and case preparation. Prior to joining the firm, Ashley practiced as a Barrister in criminal and civil litigation, during which time she established herself as a confident advocate and trial lawyer.

As a Barrister, Ashley obtained valuable experience as a criminal prosecutor acting on behalf of the UK’s Crown Prosecution Service, and representing other UK authorities in trials and contested hearings. Ashley also has experience in economic crime, having spent 18 months working in the Bribery and Corruption Unit of the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO), where she assisted in one of the largest and most complex investigations ever conducted by the SFO.

Ashley read law at university and went on to obtain an LLM in Public International Law from Universiteit Leiden, The Netherlands. Ashley completed the Bar Professional Training Course in 2016, where she obtained the highest mark of ‘Outstanding’ and received a Certificate of Honour from the Honourable Society of Middle Temple in recognition of her achievements.

Ashley Collins is an associate in Cohen & Gresser’s London office. She is a member of the firm’s White Collar Defense & Regulation and…


University of Law (BPTC, 2016); Leiden University (LLM, Public International Law, 2014); University of the West of England (LLB, Hons., 2013)

Bar Admissions

England & Wales (Barrister)

Activities and Affiliations

Member, Young Fraud Lawyers Association
Member, Women’s White Collar Defense Association
Sub-committee Member, Female Fraud Forum

The 2024 edition of The Legal 500 UK Solicitors guide has recognized Cohen & Gresser’s London office for excellence in Commercial Litigation and two White-Collar Crime and Defense categories: Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals) and Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates).

Richard Kovalevsky KC received recognition as a Leading Individual in the Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates) category, and Thomas Shortland is recognized as a Next Generation Partner in the Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market category. Additionally, John Gibson, Sir David Green CB KC, Ashley Collins, Patrick Ferguson, and Charlotte Ritchie are recognized as recommended lawyers.

Testimonials included in the tables praise the London team as “brilliantly innovative,” “top of the league,” and “standout stars in every way.” Client feedback also highlighted the team’s relentless persistence: “They will work unflaggingly and constantly until they have left no stone unturned and no potentially winning avenue unexplored.”

Opened in 2018, Cohen & Gresser’s London office provides legal services to clients around the world in a variety of disciplines. The office works closely across practices with colleagues in New York, Paris, and Washington, D.C., providing seamless support on sophisticated cross-border matters.

The Legal 500 UK Solicitors reflects the best lawyers and law firms in the UK following extensive research, interviews, and analysis of tens of thousands of submissions.

In his first speech as Director of the UK Serious Fraud Office, Nick Ephgrave last month expressed provisional support for financial incentives to whistleblowers in cases alleging significant economic crime. This marks a strategic shift as he seeks new approaches to expedite investigations and prosecutions.

In this Client Alert, John Gibson, Thomas Shortland, and Ashley Collins explore the divergent approaches to whistleblower payment schemes in the UK and the U.S. and shed light on the challenges and opportunities faced in this area by the current Director of the SFO.

Last week, the UK’s Insolvency Service published statistics on its enforcement activities and outcomes during the last financial year. The Report describes The Insolvency Service’s enforcement activities in the areas of director disqualifications, company enforcement actions, bankruptcy and debt relief matters, and criminal prosecutions. It also illustrates certain enforcement trends in director disqualifications.

In this C&G Client Alert, Thomas Shortland, John Gibson and Ashley Collins:

  1. highlight three trends in director disqualification enforcement which emerge from the Report;
  2. suggest factors that may have contributed to these trends; and
  3. discuss whether these trends are likely to continue.

They also provide some insights on contested disqualification proceedings from recent cases.

On 8 June 2022, the UK’s Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (“OFSI”) released updated guidance concerning its enforcement of the civil monetary penalties regime for breaches of financial sanctions. The update coincides with the introduction of two major amendments to the civil UK sanctions regime that came into force on 15 June 2022, which now mean that OFSI is:
  • no longer required to demonstrate that a person had knowledge or reasonable cause to suspect they were in breach of a financial sanction in assessing whether to issue a monetary penalty. This strict liability test brings the UK regime more in line with the U.S. model used for financial sanctions; and
  • able to publish details of financial sanctions breaches where a monetary penalty has not been imposed.
It seems inevitable that the increased sanctions risks (and regulatory scrutiny) created by the UK’s response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, combined with these legislative amendments, will lead to more sanctions enforcement activity, civil penalties, criminal referrals to the NCA, and possibly prosecutions. This has been reflected in recent comments made by OFSI.

In this C&G client alert, Sir David Green CB QC, Tim Harris, and Ashley Collins examine the amended UK sanctions regime and the prospects for increased UK sanctions enforcement activity (civil, regulatory, and criminal).

John W Gibson, Thomas Shortland, and Ashley Collins outline the key factors company directors must consider when making business decisions during the COVID-19 pandemic, as they may face scrutiny from a range of interested parties including creditors, employees, trade unions, landlords, customers, regulators, insolvency practitioners, and possibly law enforcement.