Shaun Leong

Equity Partner

Shaun Leong is Equity Partner with global law firm Withers.

He is a cross border disputes specialist with close to fifteen years of experience in complex international disputes. Shaun is an internationally recognised leading practitioner at the forefront of emerging and revolutionary technologies including Artificial Intelligence (A.I.), Blockchain and the Metaverse. Awards and accolades include:

  • International Arbitration Lawyer of the Year nominee in the International Asia Legal Awards 2024
  • Digital Assets Lawyer of the Year nominee in the International Asia Legal Awards 2023
  • International Arbitration Lawyer of the Year nominee in the Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific Awards 2022.
  • “Shaun is an absolute superstar in the cryptoassets sector. He has achieved remarkable successes for some of the biggest names in the digital assets market and has in a very short time created a reputation as the go-to dispute resolution lawyer in Asia for all things blockchain and Web3. He is a formidable lawyer and cross-border strategist.” (Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific 2023)
  • “Shaun Leong is a renowned name for cryptoassets disputes…the top name in the Asia-Pacific region as the go-to disputes lawyer for complex digital assets disputes…He is particularly well-versed in blockchain matters.” (Benchmark Litigation Asia-Pacific 2023)

Shaun is actively involved in artificial intelligence matters. He was recently successful in representing a prominent digital assets company in a USD 36 million dispute involving novel and complex issues around legal liability arising from purported errors made by trading systems powered by artificial intelligence models and algorithms. He also advised a leading global A.I. powerhouse on cross border disputes and acted as its relationship Partner for projects in Asia and the Middle East. He regularly engages in involved considerations around A.I. matters and hosted seminars on topics such as “Don’t Sue Me, Sue The Robot!”: Arbitrating Artificial Intelligence Liability Disputes” and “Flourishing in the Age of Artificial Intelligence: Essential Elements of being a New Age Digital Corporate Counsel”.

Some of Shaun’s experience in digital assets, blockchain and “Web 3.0” related disputes include:

  • Shaun recently became the first lawyer in the world to successfully obtain a worldwide proprietary injunction to freeze a non-fungible token on the blockchain in a commercial dispute.
  • Shaun successfully represented a prominent cryptocurrency exchange in an SIAC international arbitration in a dispute arising from a joint investment where incentive milestone payments were paid in a digital token. The dispute involves complex considerations around the proper valuation of and enforcement against cryptocurrencies.
  • Shaun successfully represented a global cryptocurrency exchange in a dispute which involves complex considerations around the obligations of an exchange in being an innocent third party to the movement of digital assets arising from alleged fraudulent activities.
  • Shaun advised a cryptocurrency exchange on cross border strategies in an international arbitration over cryptocurrency-based structured financial products.
  • Shaun often works with clients to design disputes prevention and disputes mitigation processes prior to the occurrence of any disputes.
  • Shaun regularly helps clients develop and deploy effective cross border strategies when disputes arise relating to cryptocurrencies and/or NFTs, representing clients in international arbitrations including enforcement work across a myriad of jurisdictions, and advising clients on investments in digitals assets.

Upon graduating with First Class Honours from the National University of Singapore, Shaun served in a judicial capacity as a Magistrate and Assistant Registrar of the Supreme Court for five years, where he published several notable written judgments on international arbitration law. He is also a panel arbitrator with the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), and with premier international arbitration centres across Asia-Pacific.