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Darren Kenny

Partner, Birmingham

Darren specialises in complex, high-value, cross-jurisdictional disputes. His practice embraces all aspects of international trade, commerce and finance, with a particular focus on Russia, the CIS, Eastern Europe and off-shore jurisdictions/tax havens.
+44 (0)121 516 7434

+44 (0)7855 215930

Darren Kenny


Darren's case load is a mixture of litigation and arbitration, particularly within the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA). He also has the expertise to act in ad hoc or other institutional international arbitrations, pursuant to a variety of rules such as ICC, UNCITRAL and SCC. His team is ranked Tier 1 in the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners, and Darren is highlighted as a "Leading Individual" and "Next Generation Partner" by the Legal 500.

Darren's practice extends across the fields of contract law, banking and finance, corporate and shareholder disputes, professional negligence, jurisdiction disputes and choice of law issues.  He is, in particular, vastly experienced in commercial fraud disputes and regularly represents ultra-high net worth individuals and businesses (often with links to Russia and the CIS) who have been the subject of fraud and/or corporate raiding (reiderstvo), with disputes typically ranging between $1 million to $500 million.  

Further, he has been involved in numerous injunctions including freezing injunctions and search and seizure orders, as well as restraint of trade, delivery up and continued supply injunctions.  Darren also acts as a supervising solicitor to oversee the carrying out of search and seizure orders by other law firms.

Darren has significant experience of alternative dispute resolution. He has been involved in countless mediations and accepts instructions to act as an expert witness in expert determinations and early neutral evaluations. He has also acted as an expert for the Russian and US Courts on matters of English law and he receives instructions from Big 4 accountancy practices and in-house lawyers to provide expert legal opinions.

Over the past few years, he has been involved in cases governed by a variety of laws, including Russia, BVI, Cyprus, Isle of Man, Guernsey, Jersey, the Cayman Islands, the Netherlands, India, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, Ireland, New York, Bermuda, Cameroon and Ethiopia.

Due to the nature and value of his work, his cases are often high-profile and have featured in many publications including The Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Kommersant, The Moscow Times, New York Times, Bloomberg, Sky News, Dow Jones, Business Week, Forbes, Hollywood Reporter, Crain's New York Business, Reuters, The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Times and the BBC.

Darren's cases also frequently involve household names such as BP plc, 20th Century Fox, the London Stock Exchange, Facebook, Sony Computer Entertainment, Merrill Lynch and FIFA, and he is well-versed in reputation protection and brand management arising from high-profile and business critical disputes.

Recent Cases

  • Expert opinion for the Russian Courts on a $9 billion oil dispute 
  • $500 million fraud LCIA arbitration between two Ukrainian and Russian billionaires
  • The first-ever reported case in Europe as to the meaning of “defendant” for the purposes of the CMR 
  • ₽12 billion dispute in the LCIA regarding a loan agreement between a Russian bank and Cypriot fund
  • Co-ordination of proceedings in Russia, Guernsey, BVI and Cyprus worth $0.5 billion
  • $100 million Commercial Court Yukos-related shareholders dispute between two Russian bankers
  • $50m personal guarantee dispute in the LCIA between a Dutch lender and Russian guarantor 


"Darren Kenny is a real technical genius. By far the best commercial litigator that I have ever worked with."  
Legal 500, 2021

"Darren Kenny has an excellent sense of strategy – he can see where and when to apply pressure in order to maximise the prospects of success in a case and he has a talent for spotting the best points to gain traction with a judge. It inspires confidence to work with him."  
Legal 500, 2021

"Darren Kenny is well versed in acting for clients from Russia and the CIS jurisdictions, and his varied practice includes arbitration, shareholder disputes and misappropriation of funds. One interviewee appreciates that he is "very quick to respond, attentive to detail and delivers right on time," while another source highlights that he "has a calm and considerate way of approaching things."
Chambers & Partners, 2020

"Darren Kenny is great to work with. He is switched on, intelligent, builds excellent relationships and has a good range of experience."
Legal 500, 2019

"Darren Kenny regularly represents international clients in high-value cross-border litigation with a particular focus on Russia and the CIS jurisdiction. His practice encompasses all areas of international commerce, trade and finance. Interviewees report that he "has good technical knowledge, is extremely effective, and is focused on client service" and underline his strength in providing "strategic advice." 
Chambers & Partners, 2019

 "Practice head Darren Kenny is 'driven and client focused, taking an inventive and proactive approach in litigation to try to achieve the best outcome."
Legal 500, 2018 

"Darren Kenny specialises in cross-jurisdictional litigation and international arbitration pertaining to all areas of international trade, commerce and finance. His practice extends to Russia and CEE. Sources contend that he is "thorough, practical, sensible in his approach and easy to work with as well"."
Chambers & Partners, 2018

"‘Particularly strong in litigation’, DWF’s team is jointly headed by Darren Kenny, who ‘has a great understanding of the commercial position of his clients and builds good client relationships’."
Legal 500, 2017

"Very dedicated and astute."
Legal 500, 2017

"Darren Kenny actively advises clients on cases involving Eastern European and Asian jurisdictions, assisting with cases in areas such as international trade, commerce and finance. Clients state: "He is meticulous, very user-friendly, straightforward and effective. I was very impressed"."
Chambers and Partners, 2017

"Darren Kenny is an extremely dedicated, bright and determined litigator."
Legal 500, 2016

"Darren Kenny has considerable experience handling cross-border litigation and arbitration. Sources admire his "excellent coordination of complex matters," adding that he is "meticulous and on top of all the paperwork; absolutely thorough and reliable"."
Chambers and Partners, 2016

"DWF's clients say Darren Kenny is experienced and commercially aware; he is also praised for his knowledge of disputes arising in the domestic and international carriage of goods by road"
Legal 500, 2016

"Very well prepared and thorough."
Legal 500, 2015

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