Judgment has been handed down in the landmark judicial review case of “AL v SFO”. This is the first time that the Court has examined the issue of disclosure obligations to human defendants in criminal proceedings where there has been a Deferred Prosecution Agreement in which the company has asserted legal professional privilege. The applicant AL, a defendant in criminal proceedings prosecuted by the SFO, mounted a judicial review to compel the SFO to bring breach proceedings against the company as a means of securing relevant disclosure. The Court found that there was no jurisdiction to hear the claim and dismissed it, but went on to make a number of observations of substantial relevance to the conduct of DPA cases. Zoe Johnson QC and Paul Raudnitz have acted for the SFO throughout, and they continue to be instructed in the ongoing criminal proceedings.
For a full text of the judgment, please see below: