Russia sanctions information

The Bar Council issued the following on 25 February 2022.

The leaders of the Bars in the UK and Ireland have come together this week to condemn the Russian attack on Ukraine.

“The Bar Council of England and Wales, Bar of Northern Ireland, Faculty of Advocates and Bar of Ireland unequivocally condemn the invasion of Ukraine by Russia. Ukraine is a sovereign state entitled to self-determination. International law requires the Russian Federation to respect Ukraine’s independence and sovereignty. This act of war is a gross violation of international law as set out in the UN Charter.”

Mark Fenhalls KC - Chair of the Bar Council of England and Wales
Bernard Brady KC- Chair of the Bar Council of Northern Ireland
Roddy Dunlop KC- Dean of the Faculty of Advocates
Maura McNally SC - Chair of the Council of The Bar of Ireland

Government Information and Sanctions

Sanctions have been imposed by the UK on Russia, following the Prime Minister’s announcements to the House of Commons on Tuesday 22 and Thursday 24 February 2022. Details of the measures continue to be updated and are available on the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office website.

The Financial Conduct Authority and the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI)

Professional firms and relevant practitioners will be legally required to adhere to these sanctions to safeguard the UK and the reputation of their industries.

Where there is a failure to adhere to the sanctions, the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation (OFSI) has the power to levy civil monetary penalties for breaches of financial sanctions.

A statement has been published by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in response to the sanctions.

For further details on financial sanctions you should contact OFSI or, for trade and export sanctions, you should contact the Department for International Trade’s Economic Control Joint Unit.

Bar Council - Advice and Support

Ethics Hotline: The Bar Council provides a confidential Ethical Enquiries Service to assist barristers (and, where appropriate, their clerks and other staff connected with barristers' professional practices) to identify, interpret and comply with their professional obligations under the BSB Handbook.

You can call the Ethical Enquiries line on 020 7611 1307. The line is open weekdays 09:15-17:15. Or email: [email protected]

Ethics Guidance: The Bar Council’s Ethical Guidance on Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing.

Bar Council Training: The Bar Council organises professional training for barristers and one of the sessions is focused on anti-money laundering and terrorist financing, a practical online session covering the law, its application and case studies and discussions on best practice. The next session will take place on 12 May 9:00 - 12:30. Visit the Bar Council's website to book your place.

Bar Standards Board

The Bar Standards Board has a range of information and support available to barristers including a Money Laundering Hotline and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) Guidance.

Bar Council and BSB Memorandum of Understanding: Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing.