HEC Paris graduate wins prestigious Allen & Overy Prize for thesis on tax evasion
The Master in Management alumnus is to collect his prize winnings on September 29th, awarded for his dissertation and presentation on tax law, before starting his internship at the top legal firm next year.
Adrien Soumagne (H.16), winner of the Allen & Overy Prix Juridique et Fiscal is to receive 5000 euros during a prize-giving ceremony on 29th September, plus the opportunity of a three-month internship at the prestigious law firm’s Paris office, which he will complete next year.
After presenting his project at the Allen & Overy offices in the French capital in June before a jury of legal experts and business leaders, Soumagne was declared the winner. “I was very happy when I found out that I won. It was more the subject that motivated me while carrying out this research and winning the prize was the icing on the cake,” he said.
Soumagne, who attended HEC’s Master in Management with a specialization in International Fiscal and Judicial Strategy, wrote his project on a principle in law whereby a defendant cannot not be prosecuted twice for the same crime; he applied this to taxation. “I chose this subject because it is very topical, especially following the Cahuzac and Wildenstein affairs,” he explained. (French politician Jérôme Cahuzac is accused of concealing funds in a Swiss bank account, while top French art dealer Guy Wildenstein is on trial for tax evasion.)
Earlier this year HEC Paris professors on the program selected their students’ best A-grade projects, including Soumagne’s, to put them forward for the prize. Allen & Overy then invited the eight finalists to their office to present their projects.
Soumagne has begun attending bar school where he will finish in December before beginning his internship with Allen & Overy. The law firm is part of the ‘magic circle,’ an informal term to describe the five leading law firms headquartered in London. The company created the Prize with HEC Paris in 2004, after becoming a member of the HEC Paris Foundation.