Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher has continued its London recruitment push, with the hire of Sacha Harber-Kelly, a veteran prosecutor and case controller with the U.K.’s Serious Fraud Office.
Harber-Kelly will join Gibson Dunn’s London office as a partner after a decade in the SFO’s anticorruption and bribery division. He joined the British regulator in 2007 from London-based TV Edwards Solicitors, where he was head of financial and professional regulation.
At Gibson Dunn, Harber-Kelly will focus on disputes, white-collar crime and international and multijurisdictional investigations, compliance and enforcement matters.
“After a successful career as a partner in a white-collar defense firm, Sacha spent the past 10 years handling some of the largest and most complex cases that the SFO has ever brought and is well-respected by the U.K. white-collar bar,” said a statement by Gibson Dunn chairman and managing partner Ken Doran. “Given the rise in prominence of the SFO and the number of cross-border investigations that we routinely handle, Sacha’s experience, insight and technical expertise will be of great value to our clients.”
While at the SFO, Harber-Kelly acted on its £497 million deferred prosecution agreement with Rolls-Royce Holding plc. The settlement, which was completed this January, represents the largest single investigation carried out by the regulator. His move comes ahead of the end of SFO director David Green’s leadership term at the regulator in April 2018, with Gibson Dunn reportedly among several U.S. firms competing for his services. (Green has declined to discuss his future options.)
Gibson Dunn has been on a recruitment spree across Europe in recent months, with the hire of Harber-Kelly representing the firm’s third London lateral in less than a week. Gibson Dunn recently recruited two senior London partners from Mayer Brown, including global corporate and securities co-head Jeremy Kenley. Kenley, who was also head of private equity real estate at the firm, is headed to Gibson Dunn with London tax head Sandy Bhogal.
In July, Gibson Dunn hired Herbert Smith Freehills energy co-head Anna Howell and Allen & Overy international arbitration partner Jeffrey Sullivan in London. Earlier this year, London co-chair Charlie Geffen told Legal Week that the firm was still in growth mode in Europe, highlighting financial regulatory and competition as areas where it wants to invest in the city.
In the U.S., Gibson Dunn recruited Shearman & Sterling energy and infrastructure partner Robert Nelson Jr. in San Francisco earlier this month, while also bringing on Nicole Saharsky as co-chair of its appellate and constitutional law practice in Washington, D.C.