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Marie Kavanagh

Senior Associate


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Marie Kavanagh is a senior associate in Russell McVeagh's Litigation team. She is experienced in advising on contentious financial regulatory matters, criminal investigations, internal investigations and public inquiries.
Marie's experience includes advising corporates and senior individuals facing criminal or regulatory investigations. Marie has advised clients in cases involving alleged regulatory breaches and in cases concerning criminal allegations of complex fraud, bribery and corruption, money laundering and other types of misconduct, often with a cross-border element. Marie has also advised clients in relation to internal investigations, public inquiries and on responding to compulsory information or interview requests from authorities. Marie has advised both subjects of investigations and witnesses in investigations.


  • Advising a former senior manager of a major financial institution in relation to an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority.
  • Advising a former senior manager of a major retail bank in relation to an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority into alleged misconduct and/or lack of fitness and propriety in relation to the treatment of customers.
  • Advising a large consumer credit firm in respect of its contested application for authorisation by the Financial Conduct Authority.
  • Advising the former CEO of a regulated firm in relation to an investigation by the Financial Conduct Authority into alleged misconduct and/or lack of fitness and propriety.
  • Advising a senior manager on personal responsibilities under the UK Senior Managers Certification Regime.
  • Assisting with an internal investigation for a global manufacturing company into whistleblower allegations of fraud.
  • Advising a UK-based senior manager in relation to a German criminal investigation into alleged tax fraud relating to Cum/Ex trading.
  • Advising senior individuals (including both suspects and witnesses) in relation to the UK SFO’s investigations:
    • of ENRC Ltd (previously ENRC PLC) in relation to allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption;
    • of the Glencore group of companies related to suspected bribery in the conduct of business;
    • of Quindell PLC (now Watchstone Group PLC), in relation to its business and accounting practices;
    • of alleged overseas corruption at Rolls Royce PLC;
    • into certain commercial arrangements between Barclays PLC and Qatari entities;
    • into accounting practices at Tesco plc;
    • into Sweett Group PLC in relation to its activities in the United Arab Emirates;
    • into Serco, in relation to alleged fraud and false accounting related to government contracts;
    • into alleged fraudulent trading in the foreign exchange market; and
    • alleged manipulation of the LIBOR rate.
  • Acting for a German national charged by the UK SFO with Conspiracy to Defraud in relation to allegations of manipulation of the EURIBOR benchmark.
  • Advising a senior individual in a fraud investigation carried out by the NHS Counter Fraud Service related to a high value construction project.
  • Advising a successful private equity firm and its managing director in relation to an investigation being carried out by the Integrity Vice Presidency of the World Bank.
  • Advising a senior individual in relation to a criminal investigation being carried out by the Information Commissioner’s Office.


LLB, BA (Psyc)  Victoria University of Wellington.


Marie recently joined Russell McVeagh after spending many years working at US firms in London where she advised on a number of high-profile financial crime and contentious financial regulatory matters. Marie was admitted to practise in New Zealand in 2006 and admitted to practise in England and Wales in 2015.

  • Recommended by Who’s Who Legal in 2020 and 2021 editions as a ‘Future Leader’ (EMEA Non-Partners) in its Investigations edition. WWL says: Marie Kavanagh is “head and shoulders above the rest.” Clients are “always reassured by her advice and rigour,” and dub her “an undoubted star of the future” who is “extremely hardworking and wonderfully diligent in all manner of tasks.”  (2020 edition, link here

  • Recommended by UK Legal 500 UK 2023 as a ‘Rising Star’ for Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice To Individuals). The testimonials included:

Marie Kavanagh is still an associate but it will be only a matter of time before she is made partner. She always has any case at her fingertips and her drafting skills leave nothing to be desired.’

  • Recommended by UK Chambers and Partners as an ‘Associate to watch’ in its High Net Worth 2022 edition for: Financial Crime: High Net Worth Individuals. Chambers wrote:

Marie Kavanagh of Cooley LLP is respected for advising high net worth clients on financial crime matters. "Marie was very strong and meticulous with preparation going the extra mile and never missing a detail," says an interviewee, adding that "she is always calm during some very difficult moments."

  • Recommended by Legal 500 UK 2022 as a ‘Rising Star’ for Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice To Individuals). The testimonials included:

[]… and Marie Kavanagh stand out.  Superb guidance.  Their responsiveness, meticulousness, ability to quickly zero-in on the facts and calmness under pressure all proved essential.
Marie Kavanagh is an associate who is hardworking, clever, sensible, and has great judgement.  Her client care skills are also excellent.

  • Recognised in Global Investigation Review’s 2021 ‘Women in Investigations’ special, highlighting 100 remarkable women in the profession.

  • Recommended by Expert Guides 2021 and 2022: Rising Star for White Collar Crime.

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