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More details coming about UK deferred prosecution agreements

The UK Solicitor General is publishing a Draft Code for Crown Prosecutors Thursday that's expected to contain further details about deferred prosecution agreements in the UK.

When the legislation comes into effect -- most probably in early 2014 -- it's likely to increase the likelihood of global settlements in multi-jurisdictional cases involving fraud, corruption, or money laundering.

Robert Amaee, a partner in Covington & Burling's London office and formerly with the Serious Fraud Office, said there will be a consultation (public comment) period before the draft code is adopted.

The final rules will set out the 'principles that prosecutors must take into account when deciding whether to enter into DPA discussions as well as other important matters such as their disclosure obligations in the course of any negotiations,' Amaee said.

Amaee led the negotiations for the SFO that resulted in civil settlements with Johnson & Johnson, MW Kellogg / KBR, and Macmillan Publishers, according to his firm bio.

The UK Attorney General publicly endorsed the use of deferred prosecution agreements late last year.

It's still unclear how much latitude British courts will give prosecutors to reach negotiated settlements with corporate defendants.