UK and US powers to compel disclosure of documents from overseas remain far from certain
In the United Kingdom, section 2 of the Criminal Justice Act 1987 gives the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) powers to serve a notice on companies or individuals compelling them to produce documents relevant to an SFO investigation.
The English courts have not decided whether the extraterritorial application of the section 2 powers require acompany to disclose relevant documents it holds outside the United Kingdom. SFO practice has varied over time. More recently, the SFO has adopted a more expansive interpretation of its powers in international cases.