Norton Rose Fulbright South Africa Inc
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André is a litigation lawyer based in Johannesburg. He is the head of the corporate and commercial litigation team and his authoritative areas include investigations, business ethics and anti-corruption advice, risk advisory work, compliance advice, asset recovery and mining disputes.
In South Africa, he is also head of our regulatory, compliance and investigations team. He has advised clients on various aspects of investigations, asset recovery and white collar crime and has been recognised by clients and peers as a leading litigation asset recovery lawyer.
On mining law disputes, André has advised clients on numerous judicial reviews, administrative appeals and other forms of mining law disputes.
André has wide-ranging experience in investigations and disputes, including complex, high value investigations and asset recoveries, commissions of enquiry and commercial disputes. Many cases in which he has been involved have been reported in the law reports.
André is a regular conference speaker both locally and internationally and is often asked to comment by the broadcast media on topics within his area of knowledge. He is also a widely published author of articles.
Having obtained his BA (Law) and LLB degrees from the University of Stellenbosch, he commenced his articles of clerkship within the practice in 1996. He was admitted as an attorney in 1998 and became a director of the practice in January 2001.
As part of his pro bono contribution, André sits as commissioner in the Small Claims Court.
BA (Law) and LLB degrees from the University of Stellenbosch.
- Attorney, qualified in South Africa 1998
- Advise a consortium of lenders, led by an expert credit agency, concerning a £1 billion project loan to a global mining company, with an established mine in a sub-Saharan African country. In performing the due diligence on the transaction, we were asked to scrutinise the borrower's arrangements with five host communities.
- Representing the Financial Services Board and its Chairman in the highly publicised litigation brought by Ms Rosemary Hunter, former Deputy Registrar of Pension Funds against the FSB and its Registrar concerning the so-called "Cancellations Project" involving the cancellation of registration of thousands of dormant and orphan pension funds.
- Anglo American (Kumba Iron Ore Ltd) – acting for Sishen Iron Ore Company, a subsidiary of Kumba Iron Ore and an Anglo American Group company, in a municipal rates dispute in respect of land comprising its Sishen Mine and ancillary properties, including obtaining an interdict to block enforcement of contested municipal property rates and challenging the valuations upon which the impugned rates were based before the Valuation Appeal Board for the Northern Cape Province, resulting in a settlement with the Municipal Valuer and Municipality concerned.
- Representing a digital media company in a multi-million dollar arbitration against a multi-national telecommunications company, resulting in an arbitral award in favour of the client concerning a contract for the provision of video on demand services.
- Representing the coal division of Glencore South Africa and associated companies before the South African Human Rights Commission in regard to the SAHRC's National Investigative Hearing on the Underlying Socio-Economic Challenges in Mining Affected Communities in South Africa.
- Representing Impala Platinum before the South African Human Rights Commission in regard to the SAHRC's National Investigative Hearing on the Underlying Socio-Economic Challenges in Mining Affected Communities in South Africa.
- Acting for the coal division of Glencore South Africa in regard to relocation of local communities affected by mining operations, including bringing ESTA and PIE proceedings for court sanctioned relocations.
- Conducting an internal investigation for one of South Africa's leading commercial banks with regard to regulatory matters arising from the operation of its automated teller machines.
- Acting for the industry body representing the vast majority of mining and prospecting right holders, Minerals Council South Africa, in its series of court application about the lawfulness and constitutional validity of the Mining Charter, a broad-based socio-economic empowerment charter (a government instrument) that sets the framework, targets and timetable for effecting the entry of historically disadvantaged South Africans into the mining industry. The Minerals Council South Africa's interpretation of the Mining Charter and its enforceability differs from that of the regulator. The Minerals Council South Africa and the Minister of Mineral Resources agreed to approach the court for a declaratory order on the ownership element of the Mining Charter dispute and the Minerals Council South Africa prevailed in the High Court on the "once empowered, always empowered" issue.
- Conducting a review of potential business partners for one of the world's largest multi-national energy companies with regard to its Gabonese operations.
- Performing an anti-corruption due diligence investigation for an international mining company's empowerment transaction, including investigations into individual stakeholders.
- Conducting various internal investigations in respect of three different major infrastructure projects in Southern Africa with regard to anti-corruption issues.
- Advising a leading construction group on matters relating to ongoing enforcement investigations including allegations of criminal offences involving allegations of multi-million Rand fraud, corruption and racketeering in the South African construction industry.
- Advising the board of directors of a construction company on regulatory and compliance issues resulting from internal investigations.
- Conducting an internal investigation on the operations of a Democratic Republic of Congo based business in respect of anti-corruption issues and advising a South African based multi-national shareholder in regard to its related compliance obligations.
- Impala Platinum – acting successfully in urgent interdict proceedings to halt unlawful use of emolument attachments by micro-lenders of employees' salaries, and negotiating resolution of dispute, including agreed process for future salary attachment processes.
- Kumba Iron Ore Ltd – acting for Kumba Iron Ore relative to its complex dispute with ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd, the Department of Mineral Resources and Imperial Crown Trading 289 (Pty) Ltd with regard to the mineral rights pertaining to the Sishen iron ore mine, with matter finally decided in Kumba's favour in the Constitutional Court. Kumba also prevailed in the High Court and Supreme Court of Appeal.
- Acting for Glencore Coal in respect of complex litigation involving old and new order mining rights regulated by the Mineral and Petroleum Development Act, 2002.
- Acting for Anglo American Platinum, Impala Platinum, Glencore Xstrata Coal, Optimum Coal and the Industrial Development Corporation with regard to internal administrative appeals and judicial review applications in the High Court in respect of the award of prospecting and mining rights.
- Advising the board of directors of a telecommunications company on an internal investigation and related regulatory and compliance issues, including follow on litigation and reporting obligations.
- Advising a multi-national organisation with regard to a multi-million dollar internal fraud, including internal investigations in preparing witnesses for criminal court testimony, working closely with state prosecutors on the criminal aspects of the matter and all aspects of the asset forfeiture procedure to obtain judgment against the former employees who committed the fraud.
- Advising a multi-national aid agency in respect of an UNCITRAL arbitration relating to funds embezzled by former employees and obtaining an arbitral award against respondents in an amount in excess of ZAR100 million.
- Advising a construction company on the validity of a formal enquiry, following regulatory investigation, instituted by the industry regulator (Construction Industry Development Board), with regard to remedial steps by way of High Court judicial review proceedings.
- City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality – advising the COJ with regard to dispute arising from insolvency of its contracted IT service provider Masana Technologies (Pty) Ltd (in liquidation), including insolvency related proceedings and judicial review application with regard to insolvency enquiry convened into the affairs of Masana (ongoing).
- DRD Gold – acting for client in respect of multi-million rand municipal rates dispute before specialised tribunal (Valuation Appeal Board).
- Kumba Iron Ore – acting for its Sishen Iron Ore Company subsidiary in multi-billion rand municipal rates dispute, including interim interdict and mandamus proceedings in the High Court, and procuring condonation to pursue internal remedies.
- Who's Who Legal has selected André as one of only a few lawyers worldwide through independent research with clients and peers for recognition in its in multiple editions, including 2019, of The International Who's Who of Asset Recovery Lawyers.
- Nominated as an Acritas Star Lawyer, by global leading legal industry research firm Acritas (http://acritas.com) in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020, following survey of thousands of general counsel and other senior leaders at legal departments around the world, conducted over three years.
- According to Legal500, where Norton Rose Fulbright South Africa is rated a first tier dispute resolution firm, 'clients hail André Vos for general litigation. Mining disputes is another area of key knowledge' – see www.legal500.com.
- Client Choice by Lexology – winner of asset recovery (South Africa) award in February 2020. Client Choice recognises those individuals around the world that stand apart for the excellent client care they provide and the quality of their service, including the ability to add real value to clients' businesses above and beyond the other players in the market. Lawyers can be nominated only by corporate counsel.
- Co-author of article on approaches of countries successfully curbing corruption, published in South African print and online publications.
- Co-author of article "Individual Liability for Corporate Crime in South Africa", published in the Thomson Reuters, Practical Law, November 2017.
- Blog article on defining developments on salary attachment debt collection processes and interviewed on topic by Talk Radio 702.
- Co-author of "Corporate Crime, Fraud and Investigations Multi-Jurisdictional Guide 2014/15", for Practice Law Co (Thomson Reuters).
- Authored article on role of ongoing education and training in corruption prevention, for BusinessBrief Magazine, April/May 2014.
- Authored article "ASK – to comply?" (why senior executives should take compliance seriously) for BusinessBrief Magazine, October/November 2013.
- Interviewed for Commercial Dispute Resolution Magazine, for article in May – June 2013 issue on Africa and corruption challenges for multi-nationals.
- Co-authored article entitled "No expropriation of mineral rights – what the Agri South Africa judgment means", published in Business Day's Business Law & Tax Review, 13 May 2013.
- Online interviews in February and March 2012 with Ms Shannon De Ryhove, Deputy Editor: Polity on www.polity.org.za in respect of nationalisation of mines / resource nationalism debate.