Lionel LEO is a Partner in the Restructuring & Insolvency and Special Situations Advisory Practice.

His main areas of practice involve banking & finance-related disputes, insolvency & restructuring, investigations & asset recovery, arbitration and shareholder disputes.

Lionel graduated with First Class Honours from the National University of Singapore ("NUS"). He was placed on the Overall Dean’s List and was awarded the Punch Coomaraswamy Prize for being the top student in the Law of Evidence. He also represented NUS in the Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot (Vis Moot).

Lionel served as a Justices' Law Clerk to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Singapore and as an Assistant Registrar of the Supreme Court of Singapore before entering private practice. He was also awarded the British Chevening Scholarship and Crewe Graduate Scholarship to pursue the BCL Master's degree at the University of Oxford, where he graduated with Distinction/First Class in all subjects.

Lionel has published articles in various academic journals and has taught part-time at both NUS and the Singapore Management University ("SMU"). He is a member of the SMU Faculty Mooting Committee and coaches SMU’s Vis Moot teams. He was also selected to be placed on the Supreme Court’s Young Amicus Curiae 2012/2013 and 2013/2014 list, and was appointed as amicus curiae in Magistrate’s Appeal No. 142 of 2012, Boo Tuang Hock Patrick v Public Prosecutor.

Matters of significance in which Lionel has been involved in include acting for the following:

  • Chiu Teng @ Kallang Pte. Ltd., a company in the business of property development, in the judicial review of the assessment by the Singapore Land Authority of the differential premium payable for the lifting of title restrictions for two lots of land.
  • A British Virgin Islands company and a Cypriot company in a claim against the respondents for their failure to make full payment of the purchase price for shares in three Indonesian companies.
  • A SIAC arbitration claim by an international oil & gas company with claims totalling US$500 million concerning production contracts of coalbed gas methane projects in the PRC.
  • Administratrices of an estate in successfully enforcing a trust deed in respect of the bungalow.
  • An e-payment infrastructure/service provider in a series of arbitrations out of SIAC against multiple companies owned by the U.S. Fortune 500 company.
  • OPENNET Pte. Ltd. in an application for judicial review against the The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore ("IDA") in relation to various decisions by the IDA arising from the construction and rollout of the Next Generation Nationwide Broadband Network.

Related Practices

  • Restructuring & Insolvency
  • Special Situations Advisory

Lionel was conferred the prestigious Joseph Grimberg Outstanding Young Advocate Award in 2018. The Award seeks to honour the memory of Mr Joseph Grimberg, a highly-regarded former Judicial Commissioner and Senior Counsel in Singapore, and is awarded each year to a young lawyer who has shown excellence in his/her work and achievements, while also displaying outstanding professional excellence and ethical standards.