Stafford Powell

Alison J. Stafford Powell

Baker & McKenzie LLP


Alison Stafford Powell has considerable experience counseling companies on cross-border outbound trade compliance in the areas of export controls, trade and financial sanctions, anti-terrorism controls, anti-corruption and anti-money laundering rules, US anti-boycott laws, and US foreign investment restrictions. With a background also in EU and UK trade restrictions, she helps non-US companies navigate conflicting compliance obligations and risks under US and EU trade rules. She is a dual US/English qualified lawyer and has worked in the Firm's London, Washington, DC and Palo Alto offices since 1996.

Practice Focus

Ms. Stafford Powell advises on all aspects of outbound trade compliance, including compliance planning, risk assessments, licensing, regulatory interpretations, voluntary disclosures, enforcement actions, internal investigations and audits, mergers and acquisitions and other cross-border activities. She develops compliance training, codes of conduct, compliance procedures and policies. She has particular experience in the following sectors: technology/cloud/IT services, financial services, travel/hospitality, telecommunications, and manufacturing.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Successfully negotiated significant mitigation in settlement with US Office of Foreign Assets Control for a non-US IT/telecommunications company in respect of the provision of various services and software to sanctioned airlines.

  • Managed US export control and sanctions risk assessment for US telecommunications company and for US consumer retailer.

  • Assisted European airline in overcoming regulatory hurdles to enable resumption of Iran route following the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran, including proactively advocating regulatory changes and licensing policy to US regulators.

  • For private equity fund, assessed and mitigated sanctions compliance and political risks associated with a series of acquisitions in the aviation services sector, including conducting cross-border acquisition due diligence, obtaining time-critical licenses and conducting a pre-closing compliance investigation and voluntary disclosure alongside seller's counsel.

  • Counseled financial technology and travel technology companies on compliance strategies for capitalizing on new opportunities under relaxed Cuba sanctions program.

  • Conducted multi-jurisdictional risk assessment and advised on exit strategies for consumer goods manufacturer in context of increasing international sanctions against North Korea.

  • Represented numerous clients before the US Departments of Commerce and Treasury in export control and trade/financial sanctions matters, including voluntary self-disclosures, responding to administrative subpoenas and other enforcement inquiries, licensing, classification requests, advisory opinions, and regulatory interpretations.

  • Counseled international hospitality company on compliance planning in preparation for corporate restructuring and IPO.

  • Conducted deemed export compliance review for major telecommunications company.

  • Advised on encryption technical reviews and reporting under the US Export Administration Regulations for various software, financial services and IT companies.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • The Law Society of England and Wales
  • American Bar Association, International Law Section
  • California Bar International Law Section
  • Women in International Trade - Northern California


  • District of Columbia~United States (2013)
  • California~United States (2002)
  • England & Wales~United Kingdom (1998)


  • College of Law at London (1996)
  • Hosei University, Tokyo (1994)
  • Cambridge University (M.A. Hons) (1994)
  • Cambridge University (B.A. Hons, First Class, Oriental Studies) (1992)


  • English
  • Japanese

Previous Offices

  • London
  • Washington, DC
  • Presenter, Tech Talk, Baker McKenzie, 2015-2019

  • Presenter, Immigration and Export Control, California State Bar, 2011

  • Contributor, Cross-Border Transactions Handbook, Baker & McKenzie LLP, 2008

  • Presenter, EU Export Controls and Trade Sanctions, Export Control Coordinators Association of National Laboratories, 2006

  • Co-author, International Trade Chapter of The Encyclopedia of Information Technology Law, Sweet & Maxwell Ltd., 2005