Yves Klein


International asset recovery, anti-corruption investigations, complex multi-jurisdictional civil proceedings, cross-border insolvency, recognition of foreign judgments and awards.




Admitted to the Geneva bar in 1995, Yves Klein holds a Law degree from the University of Geneva (1989) and a Diploma of higher studies in international law from the Graduate Institute of International Studies of Geneva (1993). He joined the firm in 1999. 

After acquiring professional experience with international organizations and a law firm in Washington, DC (1994-1995), Yves Klein practiced international business law and litigation with a Geneva law firm (1995-1998).

Upon joining in 1999 the firm founded by Enrico Monfrini, Yves Klein progressively focused his practice on transnational civil and criminal asset recovery proceedings on behalf of victims of economic crime. He notably represented, alone or with his partners, more than ten foreign States and recovered in excess of US$2 billion of corruption proceeds.

Yves Klein has also been active in the representation of bankruptcy estates of foreign banks or publicly traded companies, notably in the context of Ponzi schemes. He has helped to recover tens of millions of US dollars for their depositors, investors and creditors. 

He has obtained recognition of numerous foreign judgments and arbitral awards for amounts in excess of US$100 million and has successfully recovered the assets of the defendants concealed in Switzerland or abroad. 

Hailing from Luxembourg, Yves Klein has over the years gained a deep professional and cultural understanding of Latin America, in particular Brazil. He speaks Portuguese and Spanish fluently.


Practice areas

Yves Klein’s main activity is litigating and coordinating transnational asset recovery proceedings on behalf of victims of economic crimes or parties seeking to enforce their claims against assets concealed in Switzerland or abroad.

He develops strategies for the international search and recovery of assets, coordinates cross-border proceedings and represents his clients, including individuals, companies, foreign governments, and liquidators of foreign insolvencies, before civil, criminal and bankruptcy courts, in order to recover crime proceeds and obtain damages, notably from facilitators (banks, financial companies, fiduciaries, etc.).


Through ICC FraudNet and the Asset Recovery Subcommittee of the International Bar Association, Yves Klein benefits from a network of asset recovery lawyers, forensic analysts, insolvency practitioners, private investigators and litigation funders in about 100 jurisdictions around the world.


Yves Klein also puts his experience and network to the service of clients seeking the enforcement of foreign judgments, arbitral awards and insolvency orders, as well as well as claimants in commercial, marital or probate disputes.



 Yves Klein has been recognized for several years by Who’s Who Legal as one of the "Most Highly Regarded Individuals" in the world: a “renowned strategist” who is “extremely adept at developing a method and approach to successfully pursue worldwide asset recovery efforts”; a “sensational lawyer” who specialises in asset recovery litigation and fraud. He earns high praise for his “depth of experience” in the field. (The International Who’s Who of Asset Recovery Lawyers, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012;  Who’s Who Legal Special Report on Switzerland, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013). Who’s Who Legal has also included Yves Klein as Asset Recovery Thought Leader 2017 in its inaugural edition. He has been recognized as the No. 1 Asset Recovery Thought Leader in the EMEA region (outside UK) by the The International Who’s Who of Asset Recovery Lawyers 2017 and as the "Most Highly Regarded Individual" in Asset Recovery in Switzerland by Who’s Who Legal Special Report on Switzerland, 2017


 According to Chambers Europe 2017, Yves Klein is an expert in anti-money laundering and asset tracing. One interviewee describes him as having "a huge amount of experience in the area. He looks for broader solutions and is easy to get along with."

Professional affiliations

Yves Klein is the Swiss representative of ICC FraudNet, the leading global network of fraud and asset recovery lawyers, operating under the auspicies of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC).

Yves Klein is Chair of the Asset Recovery Subcommittee (Anti-Corruption Committee) of the International Bar Association (IBA), the leading organization of international legal practitioners, with more than 80’000 members around the world. He is also member of the IBA's Arbitration Committee, Litigation Committee and Insolvency Section.

Yves Klein is a member of the Geneva Bar Association, the Swiss Bar Association and INSOL Europe.


Yves Klein has published on international asset recovery, fraud and corruption since 1996.

Upcoming publications:

Switzerland, Asset Tracing & Recovery - The FraudNet World Compendium, 2nd ed., Eric Schmidt Verlag, Berlin, 2017 (co-author)

Switzerland, The Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption Review, 6th ed., Law Business Research, London, 2017 (co-author)

Going for Broke: Insolvency Tools to Support Cross-Border Asset Recovery, Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (StAR), World Bank/UNODC and International Bar Association, Washington, DC, 2017 (co-author)

Past publications (download link in the title):

Switzerland - A new hope? The Swiss Government adopts its Dispatch to the Parliament on an amendment to the provisions governing recognition of foreign insolvencies, Lexology, 22 June 2017 (co-author)

Enforcement of judgments and arbitral awards in Switzerland: overview, Enforcement of Judgments and Arbitral Awards in Commercial Matters Global Guide, 3rd ed., Practical Law, Thomson Reuters, London, 2017 (co-author) 

Switzerland, The Anti-Bribery and Anti-Corruption Review, 5th ed., Law Business Research, London, 2016 (author)

A Civil Perspective on Asset Recovery (with a Focus on Swiss Law), The International Who’s Who of Asset Recovery Lawyers, London, 2014 (author)

Public Wrongs, Private Actions - Civil Lawsuits to Recover Stolen Assets, Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (StAR), World Bank/UNODC, Washington, DC, 2014 (peer reviewer)

Emergence of the Mareva by Letter: banks' liability to noncustomer victims of fraud, Business Law International, Vol. 12, No 2, London, May 2011 (co-author)

The Puppet Masters: How the Corrupt Use Legal Structures to Hide Stolen Assets and What to Do About It, Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative (StAR), World Bank/UNODC, Washington, DC, 2011 (peer reviewer)

L’État requérant lésé par l’organisation criminelle : L’exemple des cas Abacha et Duvalier, Etat de droit et confiscation internationale, Edis, Geneva, 2010 (co-author)

Switzerland, Asset Tracing & Recovery - The FraudNet World Compendium, Eric Schmidt Verlag, Berlin, 2009 (co-author)

The Abacha Case, Recovering Stolen Assets, Peter Lang, Bern, 2008 (co-author)

Switzerland, International Tracing of Assets, Sweet & Maxwell, London, 1996 (co-author)


Yves Klein is regularly invited to speak at conferences on international asset recovery, fraud and corruption.

Upcoming presentations:

11-12 January 2018, Dealing with Allegations of Economic Crime in Arbitration, Basel: How to prove criminal conduct? Evidence issues

Past presentations:

1 December 2017, Asset Recovery in international corruption cases, in  Bijzonder Strafrecht, Anti-Corruption Conference,  Amsterdam The Netherlands 

6 November 2017, IBA Latin American Anti-Corruption Enforcement and Compliance, São Paulo: Civil and insolvency asset recovery tools: an addition to criminal proceedings.

10 October 2017, IBA Annual Conference, Sydney: Offshore structures as a barrier to recovery of assets from criminals.

29 June 2017, C5 Anti-Corruption, London: Opportunities and Obstacles in Offshore Investigations

13-14 June 2017, 15th Annual IBA Anti-Corruption Conference, Paris: Asset recovery: role and standing of victims of corruption in criminal proceedings, notably in the context of structured  criminal settlements.

3 May 2017, Florida International University College of Law 2nd Annual Conference on the Fight against Corruption and Impunity, Miami: Pluses and Minuses of Government-to-Government or Criminal-Based Asset Recovery and Case Studies of Successful Civil Asset Recoveries.

1-2 May 2017, 15th OffshoreAlert Conference, Miami: Strategies to Obtain Information in Offshore Jurisdictions

14-15 November 2016, OffshoreAlert Conference, London: Strategies to Obtain Information in Offshore Jurisdictions

18-23 September 2016, IBA Annual Conference, Anti-Corruption Committee, Washington, DC

27 June 2016, ICC FraudNet - 1° Simpósio sobre Falência Transnacional e Recuperação de Ativos, Rio de Janeiro: Homologação de Falências Estrangeiras na Suíça e Participação em Processos Penais

24 June 2016, Florida International University College of Law, The Fight Against Corruption and Impunity in 2016 and Beyond, Miami: Effective Recovery of the Proceeds of Corruption – A Legal Perspective and Case Studies

14-15 June 2016, 14th Annual IBA Anti-Corruption Conference, Paris: Asset Recovery Case Study

1-3 May 2016, 14th OffshoreAlert Conference, Miami: ‘You Can’t Run a Ponzi Scheme without a Bank’ – The Victims Strike Back

12-13 November 2015, Academy & Finance - Le nouveau tournant de la place financière suisse, Geneva: L’entraide judiciaire internationale : quels sont les pouvoirs des juges en pratique ?

2 October 2015, ICC FraudNet Conference on Fraud, Corruption and Asset Recovery, Vienna: Case Study – Potential Liability of Banks

10-11 June 2015, 13th Annual IBA Anti-Corruption Conference, Paris: Developments in civil asset recovery

17 October 2014, ICC FraudNet Conference on Fraud, Asset Recovery & Cross-Border Cooperation, Bangkok: Recovery In Complex International Cases, A Case Study

3-4 June 2014, 12th Annual IBA Anti-Corruption Conference, Paris: Success stories – real life examples of successful corruption asset recovery

6-8 November 2013, 3rd Annual São Paulo Conference on Fraud, Asset Recovery & Cross-Border Insolvency Cooperation, São Paulo: Asset Recovery in Corruption Cases – Case Studies

28 September 2012, ICC FraudNet Conference, Fall 2012, Dublin: Circumventing Bank Secrecy in Fraud Cases

13 May 2011, 7 Bedford Row Trust Busting Seminar, London: Trust Busting in Switzerland

11 March 2011, ICC FraudNet Conference, Spring 2011, Hong Kong: Dealing with Corruption - New Approaches in Tracking and Attacking Stolen Assets

30 November – 2 December 2011, 1st Conference on International Fraud & Asset Recovery and Trans‐Border Insolvency Cooperation (College of Public Attorneys of Sao Paulo) / 1º Seminário sobre: fraude internacional e recuperação de ativos e cooperação transnacional de insolvência (Escola Superior do Ministério Público de São Paulo), São Paulo: Cases, problems & solutions: The TRT Case – The forfeiture of the assets of Nicolau Dos Santos Neto in Switzerland / Casos - Problemas e Soluções: Caso TRT: o confisco dos bens de Nicolau dos Santos Neto na Suíça

1 October 2010, ICC FraudNet Conference, Fall 2010, Calgary: Developments in the new Swiss Codes of Civil and Criminal Procedure Affecting Fraud Recovery

15 October 2008, IBA Annual Conference, Anti-Corruption Committee, Buenos Aires: Recovery of looted assets - Switzerland

Practice areas

Litigation :

  • international asset recovery

  • complex civil litigation

  • cross-border insolvency

  • recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments and arbitral awards

  • international judicial assistance in civil and penal matters

  • business crime