Dawn raid—action plan
Produced in partnership with Michael Potts of PCB Byrne

The following Risk & Compliance precedent produced in partnership with Michael Potts of PCB Byrne provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Dawn raid—action plan

Dawn raid—action plan

    1. 1


      1. 1.1

        A dawn raid can be carried out on any business, big or small, so every business must be mindful of the possibility of a raid.

      1. 1.2

        What is a dawn raid?

        1. 1.2.1

          A dawn raid is an unexpected visit by the police and/or investigators from another prosecution body to search premises and gather evidence when they suspect that the business or an individual has been involved in criminal activity.

        1. 1.2.2

          During a dawn raid investigators may:

          1. (a)

            search paper and electronic records

          1. (b)

            review and seize documents, electronic files and equipment, and

          1. (c)

            interview employees

      1. 1.3

        Who can carry out a dawn raid?

        The number of prosecutors/regulators with power to carry out a dawn raid has increased in recent years. Law Enforcement Agencies which can carry out dawn raids include (but are not limited to) the Serious Fraud Office, the Financial Conduct Authority, the police, the Health and Safety Executive, the Competition and Markets Authority and HM Revenue and Customs.

      1. 1.4

        Failure to co-operate with investigators

        Failure to co-operate with investigators during a dawn raid can result in significant penalties and may constitute a criminal offence.

    1. 2

      Purpose and scope

      1. 2.1

        Investigators typically arrive unannounced first thing in the morning often taking an aggressive approach which calls for the organisation to respond quickly and effectively to ensure compliance with its obligations and to prevent disruption to the day-to-day running of the business.

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