Senior Expert Trainer, Financial Crimes
Michael C. Lauber is a lawyer and former Attorney General of Switzerland. His extensive professional experience includes:
President of the Management Board of the Financial Market Authority Liechtenstein (2010-2012); Director of the Bankers Association Liechtenstein (2004 – 2010);
Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit Liechtenstein (2000 – 2004);
Director of a Self-Regulatory Body in the AML-field, independent lawyer (Zurich, 1999 – 2000); Head of the Central Office against Organized Crime (Swiss federal Police; 1995 – 1999); Officer in the Criminal Police of a Swiss Canton (Canton of Bern, 1993 – 1995);’
Investigative Judge in a Swiss Canton (Canton of Bern, 1992 – 1993);
Law Studies in Bern, Patent as a Lawyer (1985 – 1992).
He served as Attorney General of Switzerland from 2012-2020. He was the first Attorney General of Switzerland to be elected by the Swiss Parliament. As Attorney General, he not only led the authority into independent self- governance, but fundamentally strengthened the fight against economic crime (money laundering, corruption, market manipulation, and asset recovery). The assets blocked in connection with criminal proceedings at times increased to around CHF 7 billion.
He placed great emphasis on international cooperation and sought new solutions in corporate criminal law. In this context, the world-renowned case complexities of Petrobras/Odebrecht, 1MDB, Gunvor, Uzbekistan and Football, are particularly worth mentioning. Petrobras/Odebrecht, 1MDB, Uzbekistan and Football required close strategic and conceptual-tactical cooperation with the US, Singapore, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Uzbekistan, France, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, Cyprus, Sweden, South Africa, Russia, Brazil, Argentina, and many others. Based on these experiences, he initiated legal changes that are the basis for a “Swiss Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA)”.
He has been heavily involved in the field of Counterterrorism (CT). In this context, the possibility of exchanging information within the framework of a Joint Investigation Team (JIT) was applied for the first time in a terrorism case, both for Switzerland and the US.
He took on new challenges in cybercrime in close cooperation with the Swiss cantons and with the US and has consistently incorporated intercultural challenges, especially in criminal investigations of the “Arab Spring” with Egypt and Tunisia, into strategic case management.
As a member of the Executive Committee (ExCo) of the International Association of Prosecutors (IAP), he was particularly committed to the independence and impartiality of prosecution, to adherence to the principles of the rule of law, and to dialogue with civil society.
Earlier in his career, he was instrumental in leading and shaping the first introduction and training in Operational Criminal Analysis implemented by the Swiss police in the mid-nineties.
He established and led a self-regulatory organization (SRO) as part of the implementation of the Swiss defense mechanism against money laundering. He served as an anti money- laundering (AML) evaluator for Russia, Cyprus, Oman, Luxembourg and Monaco. He served also in an expert capacity on serious economic crime as well as on organized crime and money laundering in various projects of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank (WB) in Central Asia. He has been a speaker at various national and international bodies and forums on money laundering.
He established the first Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) for the Liechtenstein government. This work was the main reason that Liechtenstein was removed from the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) blacklist of non-cooperative countries and territories in the field of AML in the early 2000s. As head of the FIU, he was entrusted with the processing of old cases related to East/West trade in Germany after World War 2.
As Director of the Bankers Association, he played a decisive role in shaping the path of the Liechtenstein financial center towards tax transparency (zero-tolerance policy). In this context, he negotiated with the Subcommittee on Investigations of the US- Senate under Carl Levin and with the German authorities. Stuart E. Eizenstat has said in this context: “No country did it further and faster than Liechtenstein”.
As President of the Liechtenstein Financial Market Authority, elected by the Liechtenstein Parliament, he played a decisive role in shaping the legal implementation of the EU-Directive on Market Abuse. To combat market manipulation in connection with penny stocks, he maintained close cooperation, in particular with the specific US authorities (SEC).