Matrix barristers have considerable experience representing and advising those who are subject to asset-freezing and other financial sanctions measures, as well as advising those dealing with individuals and entities subject to such measures. Matrix members also advise those seeking to deal with export control regimes which often overlap and interact with asset-freezing and financial sanction regimes.

Advising and litigating in relation to financial sanctions and export control requires knowledge of public law, criminal law, international law and EU law. It also requires skills at dealing with HM Treasury and other bodies to obtain licences for otherwise prohibited activities and transactions. The range of expertise at Matrix means that chambers is well-placed to assemble teams that can advise and assist on the wide variety of issues that arise.

Members of Matrix have assisted those subject to asset-freezing measures domestically, in the EU and at the UN level. They have been involved in litigation in the UK and EU courts seeking to have designated individuals de-listed and have advised on applications for de-listing by the UN Ombudsperson. Members of Matrix also have considerable experience in advising those who have business dealings, directly or indirectly, with individuals or entities subject to asset-freezing measures as to reporting requirements and the structuring of transactions, as well as advising on export control regimes applicable to designated countries.

Notable Cases

  • Challenges to domestic asset-freezing regimes seeking to impose UN sanctions (Ahmed v HMT, SC);
  • Challenges to decisions of UK authorities as members of UN Security Council (Youssef v SSFCO, SC);
  • Challenges to UK asset-freezing measures (Begg v HMT, CA);
  • Determination of disclosure requirements in asset-freezing cases (Mastafa v HMT, HC);
  • Proper approach to construing strict liability criminal offence of supplying arms in breach of Iraq (UN Sanctions Order) 2003 (R v. D).