Francesca specializes in the litigation and investigation of high value commercial, antitrust and regulatory enforcement matters. She is noted for her expertise in ethics, governance and human rights in addition to litigation of antitrust, consumer and data privacy law.
Francesca is Global Co-Lead for Competition Litigation and also sits on Baker McKenzie's EMEA Compliance & Investigations leadership team. Francesca is recognised by Legal 500 as a Next Generation partner, was nominated as "Best in Litigation" Euromoney LMG Europe Women in Business Law Awards 2019 and was nominated as "Compliance Lawyer of the Year" at the Women in Compliance Awards 2019.
Representative Legal Matters
Commercial, competition and class action litigation
- Leading defence for Barclays Bank of civil claims for damage following on from regulatory investigations on FX, including two opt out class actions in the UK and with estimated exposure of USD 4 billion.
- Defending L'Oréal on challenge to selective distribution agreement brought by aspirant distributor and pursuit of ancillary debt claim.
- Acting for a global automotive parts manufacturer in defending claims across the UK, Germany, Italy, Sweden and the Netherlands following on from regulatory investigations in respect of car parts.
- Defending an EU manufacturer of technical and comfort foam on claims following on from a settlement with the European Commission.
- Acting for a global electronics manufacturer on defence of claims following on from regulatory investigations in respect of microchips.
- Lead advisor to one of five defendants to a High Court follow-on action for damages by tire manufacturers in respect of the Butadienne Rubber cartel - including litigation of an "Italian torpedo".
- Advised a European medical devices manufacturer on contentious competition litigation strategy and securing supply from a dominant upstream manufacturer.
Regulatory investigations and enforcement
- Advised Facebook on the appeal of sanctions imposed by the UK Information Commissioner on grounds of fairness and interpretation of law in respect of Cambridge Analytica sanction.
- Advised a global social media platform in relation to alleged misuse of 86 million users data and defence of regulatory investigations on data privacy, consumer and competition breaches across 36 jurisdictions.
- Acted for a global investment bank in coordinating investigation and reporting on a number of regulatory investigations - including before the European Commission and UK Competition and Market Authority.
- Acted on behalf of a major mobile telephone network operator in the judicial review of the European Roaming Regulation and resulting preliminary reference to the Court of Justice of the European Union.
- Acted for a lottery operator on judicial review of the lawfulness of local lottery operations.
- Acted for BACTA (UK trade association for gambling operators) on the judicial review of aspects of the licensing regime for betting terminals.
Ethics, human rights and compliance
- Advising a global social media platform on its responsibility for and approach to content hosted by the platform, including its policy on handling hate speech or activity that potentially may influence political process and approach to contemplated changes to that policy.
- Advising clients across sectors on corporate social responsibility, ethics and human rights considerations - including monitoring and auditing effective implementation of policies, recommending remediation to address alleged regulatory infringements and defence of mass litigation brought by activist shareholders or NGOs.
- Advising clients on the application of section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 to their group companies - including creation of annual statements and due diligence on supply chains.
- Advised a global drinks manufacturer on potential public and EU law challenges to alteration to the laws on sale of alcoholic beverages.
- Advised a major food manufacturer on potential public and EU law challenges to restrictions of advertising of foods that are high in fat, salt and sugar.
- Advised an international cosmetics company on the lawfulness of restrictions imposed on its advertising by the ASA and potential public and EU law challenges to that decision.
Francesca graduated from Kings College London with a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and subsequently attained a Master of Law from the University of London specialising in Administrative Law and Human Rights. Francesca joined Baker McKenzie in 2004 and was admitted as a solicitor in September 2006. She attained higher rights of audience to act as a solicitor-advocate in 2009.
Francesca has been seconded to Baker McKenzie's offices in Chicago, Washington and Sydney as well as to clients Barclays Bank PLC, the BBC Trust and O2. Francesca was a marshall at the Royal Courts of Justice in 1998 and in 2000 sitting with a High Court judge.
Pro bono and community involvement
Francesca has assisted the UN High Commissioner for Refugees as intervener before the Supreme Court, in one case regarding the application of the internal flight alternative in international refugee law and another on whether, rather than seeking refuge, individuals should be obliged to feign loyalty to a political regime in order to avoid persecutory ill-treatment.
Francesca researched and helped to draft an amicus brief to the Supreme Court on behalf of the Council for Parent Attorneys and Advocates regarding the protections afforded to students suffering from disabilities while seconded to Baker McKenzie in Chicago.
Professional Associations and Memberships
- Law Society of England and Wales
- Law Society of Ireland
- Administrative Law Bar Association
- England & Wales~United Kingdom (2006)
- King's College London, UK (LL.M.) (2003)
- King's College London, UK (LL.B.) (2002)