The Women’s White Collar Defence Association (WWCDA), a coalition of women lawyers specializing in white-collar criminal practice, launched its India chapter on 2 June.
“Gender diversity and white-collar crime practice are both very close to my heart and I have always wanted to do something more holistic,” Rupinder Malik, new head of the WWCDA’s India chapter and partner at J Sagar Associates, told India Business Law Journal. “[The] WWCDA is an ideal platform that truly covers all fronts.”
Malik said corruption, bribery and corporate fraud were currently the most prominent white-collar issues. “Today various companies are facing formidable challenges in deterring new-age fraud, and ignoring the potential risks of economic crime can prove costly.”
She said that money laundering, corporate fraud including embezzlement by employees and senior management, violation of ethics and policies, and data theft were all commonplace. Malik has extensively advised companies on anti-corruption, fraud, anti-money laundering and specializes in areas including M&A, private equity and joint ventures.
The group’s membership is open only to senior women professionals who work in white-collar practice areas. “We are highly selective in bringing on board only those members with requisite expertise and interest,” said Malik. “The India chapter members will meet periodically to promote thought leadership, and attend trainings and discussion forums.”
The WWCDA was established in 1999 in Washington DC, as its founders recognized a glaring lack of women in white-collar practice and existing professional white-collar organizations. Now it has 42 chapters throughout North America, Europe, Latin America and the Asia-Pacific.