Rhys Novak, Partner
Rhys is a dispute resolution specialist.
Rhys is a dispute resolution specialist with a broad-based disputes practice, advising both companies and individuals on commercial, corporate and financial services disputes. He also has a particular specialism in running and advising on internal investigations concerning suspected economic crimes such as bribery and fraud.
He advises current and former officers and employees involved in regulatory and criminal investigations and prosecutions, especially where that individual requires personal advice independent from the advice being provided to their implicated company. He has also prepared and advised on compliance programmes relating to anti-bribery and anti-money laundering and on policies prohibiting the facilitation of tax evasion.
Rhys represents clients on a wide range of commercial, corporate and financial services disputes and regulatory issues including breach of contract, fraud, tax, shareholder, professional negligence and warranty claims in both litigation and arbitration.
He is an experienced user and advocate of alternative dispute resolution, having negotiated settlements and represented clients in over 25 mediations.
Rhys became a partner at legacy firm Speechly Bircham in May 2011, having joined in March 2008 from Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, where he trained and was admitted as an English solicitor in 2000.
- Representing a former employee of Shell in corruption investigations commenced by the Serious Fraud Office and advising him on his defence of bribery and corruption charges in Italian criminal proceedings concerning an offshore oil license in Nigeria valued at over £1 billion
- Representing a tech entrepreneur in his claims to recover over £20 million in complex multi-party fraud proceedings in both the English Commercial Court and in an LCIA arbitration. involving the Serious Fraud Office, the Viscount of Jersey, litigation funders and various office-holders. Rhys obtained two freezing injunctions – one in England and one in Jersey in support of his client’s claims. These cases have also involved applications and hearings in the Isle of Man and Liechtenstein
- Representing an engineering company on its defence of a US$146 million claim concerning its investment in a Tanzanian power plant. This work included a multi-jurisdictional battle involving proceedings in England, Tanzania, New York and the Netherlands
- Representing MasterCard UK Members Forum Limited (in members' voluntary liquidation) on 15 claims brought by high profile retailers concerning the alleged anti-competitive effects of interchange fees on credit card payments
A regulator's demand for documents - whose privilege is it anyway...?
Rhys looks at the recent decision in A v B, The Financial Reporting Council Limited
Internal investigations - 6 tips on collecting documents during the COVID-19 pandemic
Rhys outlines his 6 top tips on collecting documents during the COVID-19 pandemic