Richard Kovalevsky QC is a partner in Cohen & Gresser’s London office and is the head of Criminal Defense for the London office. He has over 30 years of experience representing high net worth individuals, directors, and corporations in a wide variety of white collar criminal disputes, regulatory and internal investigations, and civil litigation, with a particular focus on financial crime. Richard has successfully defended against, and has extensive experience advising on, claims of fraud, money laundering, corruption, market manipulation, market abuse, competition and cartel allegations, and insider trading. He has advised and engaged at all levels of the UK court system, as well as being actively involved internationally. Richard regularly handles matters pending before the UK Serious Fraud Office, the U.S. Department of Justice, the UK Financial Conduct Authority, and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).

Highly regarded by both clients and peers, Richard is currently recognized in Band 1 by Chambers & Partners for Financial Crime: High Net Worth Individuals – UK, as a Leading Individual by The Legal 500 UK for Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates), as a National Leader in Who’s Who Legal in the Criminal Fraud Silk and Investigations Silk categories, and in Spear’s 500. Chambers High Net Worth 2019 commentary describes him as having “successfully represented many high net worth clients and defendants. He has a great rapport with clients and they really appreciate his direct and robust approach to matters. He is very focused and really knows what clients what to achieve. Clients will find that he adds a lot of value and brings many additional benefits by instructing him.” The Legal 500 recently observed that Richard is “very commercially aware and pragmatic in the way he represents clients,” with emphasis placed on his ability “to look at a matter and work out the best mechanism of defence.” Further comments note that he is “particularly suited to difficult fraud cases that require lateral thinking and a commercial approach” and that “he achieves an uncommon number of positive outcomes.”

Prior to joining Cohen & Gresser, Richard was a partner and head of the financial crime practice at a prominent UK litigation firm. Before that, he practiced as a leading silk (barrister) at 2 Bedford Row.

Publications

Co-author, thebriberyact.com: a leading resource on the UK Bribery Act

Richard Kovalevsky QC is a partner in Cohen & Gresser’s London office and is the head of Criminal Defense for the London office. He has over 30…

Education

Manchester University LLB Hons

Bar Admissions

England & Wales Barrister & Queen’s Counsel; British Virgin Islands

Activities and Affiliations

Queen’s Counsel

Member of the Fraud Lawyers Association

International law firm Cohen & Gresser has been recognized by The Legal 500 UK for its “wide international reach” and “seamless collaboration” on cross-border investigations and disputes. Client commentary highlights C&G’s London office as “the go-to team for risk advisory” work and notes that clients should “instruct them before the other side does.”

C&G is recognized as a leading firm in the Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates) category. The guide emphasizes the firm’s work with respect to the UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and notes that the team is “distinguished by its ability to draw on the expertise of experts in Washington, DC, New York, and Paris” for its multi-jurisdictional work. Clients highlight the team’s “astonishing depth of knowledge,” “strong connections to authorities,” and “razor-sharp analytical skills.”

The Legal 500 also recognized C&G in the Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals) category. The guide notes that the firm is known for “housing a very strong team of white-collar crime specialists” who are “well-versed in representing senior executives and high-net-worth individuals” in all types of cases and investigations. Clients highlight the practice’s “terrific experience in the most high-profile and difficult cases” and praise the diverse experience each team member brings to the firm’s cases, including as city lawyers, ex-SFO prosecutors, solicitors from crime boutiques, and barristers.

C&G is also recognized as a leading firm in the Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market category. The guide recognizes the firm’s experience in complex, cross-border commercial litigation and highlights the team’s strength in financial services representations, particularly with respect to investment funds litigation and banking and financial services disputes. Clients applaud the practice as “well organized and accessible” and underscore the team’s ability to “give you a full picture” and “summarise the essential of what needs to be known.

In addition, Richard Kovalevsky QC has been recognized as a “Leading Individual” for Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates). Richard, who joined C&G in November 2020, is described by clients as “clever and experienced” and a “major addition for the firm.”

Ranked Practice Areas:

  • Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)
  • Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals)
  • Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market
Recognized Individuals:

  • John Gibson: Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market; Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals); Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)
  • Richard Kovalevsky QC: Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market; Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals); Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)
  • Jumana Rahman: Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market
  • Thomas Shortland: Commercial Litigation: Mid-Market; Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)
  • Tim Harris: Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals); Regulatory Investigations and Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)
About The Legal 500: The Legal 500 analyzes the capabilities of law firms across the world. Its rankings “highlight the practice area teams who are providing the most cutting edge and innovative advice to corporate counsel.”

Global Investigations Review (GIR) has again nominated Cohen & Gresser for its Most Important Court Case of the Year award for the major victory at the UK Supreme Court achieved by C&G’s Richard Kovalevsky QC on behalf of KBR Inc. On February 5, 2021, the UK Supreme Court handed down a landmark judgment that delivered a decisive victory to KBR Inc. and agreed to the arguments presented by Richard and the rest of the KBR legal team. In its decision, the Supreme Court held that the SFO could not compel a foreign company to produce documents held abroad under Section 2(3) of the Criminal Justice Act of 1987.

Cohen & Gresser is pleased to announce that Spear’s Wealth Management has named Jeffrey M BronheimJohn W Gibson, and Richard Kovalevsky QC to its 2021 Legal Directory & Hommes d’Affaires index. The Spear’s legal index identifies the top legal counsel for private clients in the UK.

Jeff Bronheim is featured as a “Top Recommended” corporate lawyer in the 2021 index. Spear’s notes that Jeff is an “eminent and personable partner” and “comes highly recommended by a senior adviser in wealth management.” Jeff serves as the Managing Partner of Cohen & Gresser’s London office and has over 30 years of experience assisting funds, companies, high-net-worth individuals, and family offices with complex legal and business issues, including investments, regulatory considerations, disputes, and structural planning.

John Gibson is featured as a “Top Recommended” criminal lawyer in the 2021 index and is commended for his “expertise with UK/US cooperation in economic crime investigation.” John leads Cohen & Gresser’s UK White Collar and Investigations practice and is a former senior prosecutor at the UK’s Serious Fraud Office. He offers rare insight into the focus of UK law enforcement and financial regulation, when and how to engage with regulators and prosecutors, and how to develop and deploy the best litigation strategy for a wide range of criminal and compliance situations.

Richard Kovalevsky QC, featured consistently by Spear’s as a “Top Recommended” criminal lawyer, is once again included in the 2021 criminal lawyers and hommes d’affaires indices. Spear’s highlights “the wide range of cases that come across Kovalevsky’s desk” and notes that “his client base is similarly varied.” Richard is the head of Criminal Defense for the London office. He specializes in advising and representing high-net-worth individuals in connection with international and domestic issues and is known for his discreet tactical approach and expertise.

From Cohen & Gresser’s office in Mayfair, Jeff, John, Richard, and their UK colleagues work closely with attorneys in Cohen & Gresser’s U.S. and French offices on complex multi-jurisdictional matters and offer a multi-disciplinary practice tailored to the needs of ultra-high and high-net-worth individuals and family offices. Leveraging decades of experience, including at premier investment houses, the Bar, and the top-tier of elite global law firms, Cohen & Gresser delivers consistent, high-quality service across the types of matters our clients are likely to face, including fund investing and structure, strategic transactions, art law and restitution, privacy and data security, employment matters, tax issues, regulatory considerations, commercial disputes, reputation management, and, when necessary, defense against litigation, investigation, and prosecution.

Richard Kovalevsky QC has been recognized by Chambers in its 2021 High Net Worth guide as a Band 1 lawyer for Financial Crime: High Net Worth Individuals in the UK. Chambers notes that Richard is “highly sought after by high net worth individuals under investigation by the FCA, the SFO and the DOJ.”

Richard received outstanding praise from clients and colleagues, with one interviewee describing him as “a very bright lawyer” with a “lovely presentational style” and “savviness.” Another interviewee notes that “he is very down to earth, very straightforward, and clients like that. He comes up with creative solutions to complex problems. He is very dedicated to his clients and he is very good to work with."

 Published by Chambers & Partners, the High Net Worth Guide ranks the leading lawyers and law firms for international private wealth. The guide is used by family offices and professional advisers to wealthy individuals, providing objective guidance on an international scale.

Richard Kovalevsky QC spoke with Law360 about the UK Serious Fraud Office's probe into one of the world's biggest bribery scandals. "In a normal period of time you would say it was a success for SFO, but there have been difficulties along the way," said Richard Kovalevsky QC of Cohen & Gresser LLP, adding that "the overall success of the case is probably freestanding" from criticism leveled at the SFO. Richard added that he “wouldn't rush to judgment on Osfosky's interaction with the go-between until everything is clear." (Subscription Required)

On 5 February 2021, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom handed down a landmark judgment, delivering a decisive victory to KBR Inc. and agreeing to the arguments presented by Cohen & Gresser’s Richard Kovalevsky QC and the rest of the KBR legal team. The Supreme Court held that the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) could not compel a foreign company to produce documents held abroad under Section 2(3) of the Criminal Justice Act of 1987. The decision was covered by the following publications:
On 5 February 2021, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom handed down a landmark judgment, delivering a decisive victory to KBR Inc. and agreeing to the arguments presented by Cohen & Gresser’s Richard Kovalevsky QC and the rest of the KBR legal team. The Supreme Court held that the SFO could not compel a foreign company to produce documents held abroad under Section 2(3) of the Criminal Justice Act of 1987.

International law firm Cohen & Gresser today announced that Richard Kovalevsky QC, a distinguished barrister and Queen’s Counsel, will join the firm’s White Collar Defense & Regulation group as a partner in its London office. As head of Criminal Defense for the London office, Richard’s hire will bolster Cohen & Gresser’s highly-regarded White Collar Defense practice and strengthen the firm’s ability to provide clients with sophisticated and strategic guidance on the most complex government and internal investigations.

Richard Kovalevsky QC will speak at GIR Live: London on a panel that examines crisis management from the perspective of in-house and private practice lawyers, media experts, journalists, enforcers and NGOs. Panelists will discuss how things look from their perspective in a crisis and why things play out the way they do.