Peters & Peters

AI and the SFO: papering over the cracks?

Two recent reviews from the Commons Justice Committee into the infamous collapse of a couple of Serious Fraud Office (SFO) cases both concluded that the collapses were due to significant disclosure failures.

Both reviews also identified serious organisational issues, which were addressed in evidence from SFO Director Lisa Osofsky and Chief Operating Officer Michelle Crotty.

Some of the issues included an “endemic lack of resources” in respect of the largest cases, the lack of incentivisation for individuals to take on disclosure officers’ duties, as well as pervasive staff resourcing and retention issues.

In a wider attempt to address these issues, the SFO is proposing to spruce up its disclosure processes, including making greater use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning .

In this article for The Law Society Gazette, Rachel Cook and Abbie Melvin discuss some of the issues plaguing the organisation and ask whether a greater use of AI will indeed cure its woes or whether it would be better advised to tread a careful path.