Thomas Helck

Partner, Frankfurt


“Frequently recommended lawyer for compliance investigations” (JUVE Handbook 2020/2021) and “Top Lawyer for Compliance” (WirtschaftsWoche 04/2022)


Thomas advises decision-makers and businesses in white collar and administrative proceedings both on national and international level. He has more than a decade of experience in white collar and administrative investigation matters including criminal defense of corporations and individuals.

He advises and represents clients with respect to a wide variety of offences including lack of supervision, tax evasion, bribery, corruption, money-laundering, market manipulation, insider trading and investment fraud. Furthermore, he supports clients in case of dawn raids by investigation authorities.

Thomas is specialized in internal investigations, white collar defence as well as in establishing and reviewing compliance management systems, frequently sharing his knowledge both as an instructor for compliance trainings and as a speaker at conferences.

Prior to joining White & Case LLP, Thomas led the German white-collar department of an UK Magic Circle law firm and worked as a public prosecutor in Munich investigating white-collar offences for five years. He started his career as lawyer in 2006 working for a Tier 1 US law firm.

Thomas speaks and writes articles on white-collar crime and investigations regularly.

Bars and Courts
Dr jur
University of Heidelberg
Second State Exam
Higher Regional Court of Wiesbaden
First State Exam
University of Heidelberg
Student Exchange
University of Lausanne


International industrial group*
Criminal defense of an international industrial group against investigations by the public prosecutor's office on the suspicion of tax fraud through the formation of allegedly inadmissible provisions. Coordination of the individual defense lawyers and settlement negotiations with the public prosecutor's office.

Trading company*
Comprehensive internal investigations for an international trading company in relation to prosecution investigations on suspicion of corruption and tax fraud by business activities in Africa and the Middle East.

International airplane manufacturer*
Advising in connection with a prosecution investigation regarding the sale of aircrafts to Austria.

German defense company*
Advising the minority shareholder on criminal investigations against a defense company belonging to the group and accompanying the settlement negotiations with the public prosecutor's office.

International car manufacturer*
Criminal law advice and defense of an international car manufacturer with regard to investigations by the public prosecutor's office regarding the Diesel issue.

International pharmaceutical producer*
Internal Investigations with regard to criminal investigations on suspicion of fraud and coordination with the public prosecutor's office.

Support during investigations*
Assisting clients with investigations by the authorities and communicating with the public prosecutor's office and the criminal investigation department. Establish investigation guidelines and conduct investigation training for management and staff.

Criminal complaints*
Drafting criminal complaints for clients for possible criminal offences committed by (former) employees and accompanying prosecution investigations, including fraud or the betrayal of business and company secrets.


*Matters prior to joining White & Case

Speaking Engagements

Member of the panel "Internal investigations, reform and legal privilege" at the 3rd Annual GIR Live Event 2019, Frankfurt am Main

Lecture on criminal law at the WM Practice Seminar 2019, Frankfurt am Main

Lecture on internal investigations at the Euroforum Compliance Academy 2014, Heilbronn

Lecture on criminal investigations concerning corporations at the German Compliance Congress 2014, Berlin


"The New Corporate Due Diligence Act: Potential Liability under Civil Law and Administrative Law" ("Das neue Lieferkettengesetz: Mögliche zivilrechtliche und bußgeldrechtliche Haftung"), July 2021 (Client Alert Commercial Litigation / White Collar/Investigations / International Arbitration with Sonja Hoffmann, Christian Theissen and Christoph Zuschlag)

New round in the fight against money laundering, Börsen-Zeitung, 171/2020, p. 9

German Chapter of Global Legal Insights – Bribery & Corruption, 2020, 7th edition, published by Global Legal Group Ltd.

German legislative initiative on new corporate sanctions law (Client Alert White Collar/Investigations with Dr. Alexander Kiefner, Dr. Tine Schauenburg and Karl-Jörg Xylander) September 2019

Seizure of documents from an internal investigation, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 5/2018, Annotation 1

Seizure protection for defense documents accidentally sent to the public prosecutor's office, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 3/2018, Annotation 3

Sufficient specification of the suspected offence and the period of the offence in the search warrant, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 3/2017, Annotation 2

Seizure protection independent of formal suspect status, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 6/2016, Annotation 1

No seizure protection for compliance ombudspersons, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 5/2016, Annotation 1

Seizure protection for documents from internal investigations, Journal der Wirtschaftsstrafrechtlichen Vereinigung e.V. WiJ 2016, pp. 83 et seq.

Seizure protection of legal documents prepared for the defense of companies, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 3/2015, Annotation 1

Violation of operational supervisory duties in a group of companies, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 2/2015, Annotation 1

Embezzlement by board members of the Kassenärztliche Vereinigung, juris PraxisReport Compliance & Investigations 1/2015, Annotation 5

Self-reporting in foreign trade law (with Dr. Daphne Petry), Zeitschrift für Zölle und Verbrauchsteuern, ZfZ 2015, pp. 151 et seq.

Public Prosecutor's Investigations in the Company, Compliance Berater, CB 2014, pp. 83 et seq.

Medical care in pre-trial detention with respect to the free choice of doctor (Dissertation 2009)

Awards and Recognition

WirtschaftsWoche: TOP Lawyer 2022 - Compliance

WWL says: "At White & Case, Thomas Helck excels when it comes to advising clients on highly sophisticated internal investigations and business crime defence proceedings."

Who's Who Legal Investigations: Future Leaders – Partners, 2022

JUVE 2020/2021: Frequently recommended lawyer for "Compliance"

Top Lawyer 2020, WirtschaftsWoche "Compliance"

Who's Who Legal Investigations: Future Leaders – Partners, 2021

WWL says: Thomas Helck has "great experience due to his past as a prosecutor", giving him "sound knowledge of how authorities think and work"