Information and Intelligence Gathering

The available financial records usually only tell a small part of a whole story. In addition to what we can achieve with publically available information and asset tracing, there is often a need to be more proactive. Certain contentious situations require information about individuals, businesses, transactions and relationships that goes beyond purely financial matters. Often, understanding the human side of a case, the personalities involved and their motivations and relationships, can be as important and as constructive as simply looking through the books.

For this reason, Honeycomb provides financial intelligence services to add layers of meaning and interpretation to the raw data. Honeycomb has access to data held on the web, the dark web and our team has, in the past, been able to draw on information from social media platforms to investigate fraud cases and enhance the results of our financial investigations.

Honeycomb works both internally and in conjunction with country or industry specific experts to gather the necessary intelligence to understand not just how, but also why and where, risks are likely to occur.

Case Studies on Information and Intelligence Gathering

Insolvency Company Investigation into Director Bribery

Honeycomb were instructed by the liquidators to investigate a number of payments made personally by directors prior to insolvency which the directors were claiming could be offset against their overdrawn loan accounts, so that they appeared not to owe the company anything. By collecting open source information as to identities, residential addresses, occupations and locations of bank branches, and by reviewing social media, particularly LinkedIn records, we were able to piece together the circumstances of a bribery scheme whereby directors had been paying bribes to the contract managers of customers so that they learnt the details of their competitors’ pricing on contracts they were tendering for. This rendered the payments unlawful and so not to be offset against sums on loan accounts due to the company, which were then recovered for the benefit of creditors.

Investigating Russian Joint Venture Collapse

Honeycomb were instructed in relation to a dispute over the collapse of a joint venture dispute in Russia. A number of financial transactions appeared of concern, and the involvement of a number of third parties warranted further investigation. Using the available records as a starting point, and relying on open source material as well as interviewing a number of parties, Honeycomb were able to piece together a web of corruption and procurement fraud which included fake suppliers, collusion over prices, payment for non existing goods, and false transfer pricing.

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