Paul Hawkes is a relatively unusual detective in that he has spent most of his working life as a legal investigator and is now an accomplished veteran in the field. With a finance background, he established himself within the UK investigation industry in August 1977, soon developing specialties in crisis management relating to extortion and blackmail, complex traces (finding missing people) worldwide, and covert surveillance services. Over his prolific career, he has progressively acquired a comprehensive range of well-placed contacts, industry knowledge, techniques, and resources, conducting numerous security assignments and projects spanning the globe.

During the 1980s and mid-1990s, he became a ‘go-to’ asset investigator both within and outside the UK, developing specific expertise in worldwide asset identification and location, as well as providing strategic investigative information, running assignments and projects globally. Throughout this period, his work was near exclusively on behalf of legal and investigative firms and later for select private individuals and governments, regularly working on high-profile cases in the international arena. His ability to understand clients’ requirements and discreetly get the job done has earned him a formidable reputation. With decades of experience, he lives and breathes forensic investigations and intelligence.

Projects and Assignments

He managed and ran a renowned but exclusive research agency working out of Liechtenstein during the 1980s and 1990s, later redeveloping Research Associates into one of the UK’s premier ‘full-service agencies’ after changes in UK and worldwide legislation during the late 1990s. Both he and Research Associates have been the subject of numerous low-key articles appearing in the international and UK press, including The Times, The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, and The Independent.

In the public domain, his involvement is well-documented in investigations into numerous high-profile matrimonial matters, strategic covert surveillance, and fraud cases involving multi-million-pound losses, where retrieval of funds was high on the agenda. These include Polly Peck/Asil Nadir; the Brink’s-Mat Gold Robbery; identifying funds sequestrated by the UK Government during the 1980s NUM Miners Strike; and helping identify funds held by correspondent banks in London by Rafidain Bank of Iraq and Rasheed Bank of Iraq during the Gulf War. He also initiated the original focused investigation into Harold Brown (Diana, Princess of Wales’ butler), which led directly to the police investigation and subsequent arrest of former royal butlers Harold Brown and Paul Burrell. He was also the lead investigator, working in both the UK and South Africa, in the infamous Bruce Grobbelaar libel case involving the Sun Newspaper. Numerous prominent private clients remain forever anonymous and confidential; he is renowned for his consistent discretion and sensitivity in all matters.


Currently the senior partner of Research Associates International, a full agency offering ‘high spec’ investigative assistance to select clientele worldwide, he is a longstanding full member in good standing of the Association of British Investigators (ABI) and regularly sits on the ABI’s board of examination, as well as occupying other local positions. In 2010, he was nominated for the Association of British Investigators’ prestigious ‘Investigator of The Year’ award; this honor was repeated in the ABI’s centenary year, 2013. He has also been nominated as ‘Investigator of the Year 2014′ by the influential World Association of Detectives (WAD). He is a full member of the Institute of Professional Investigators (IPI), a longstanding full member of the elite World Association Detectives (WAD) and a member of the British and European Polygraph Association (BEPA), The National Association of Investigative Specialists (NAIS), an Associate of the Internationale Kommission der Detektiv-Verbände, as well as a past member of the Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals (SCIP).

Paul Hawkes holds a clear Criminal Conviction Certificate (Disclosure No 110100104588132). This certificate is renewed every three years as part of the ABI’s self-regulating criteria.

He authored a series of articles originally written as ‘Insider’ for ‘Information Security Management’ magazine during 2001/2002. Additionally, he has given numerous talks on the art and logic of investigation, including a recorded lecture entitled ‘Secret Lives’ for the Wellcome Foundation, within ‘The Identity Project’ presented within a major exhibition hosted by ‘The Wellcome Collection ‘in January 2010.

Personal Life

He has a multifaceted understanding of counseling and anger management skills and was instrumental in helping establish the British Association of Anger Management (BAAM).

He is a fully trained scuba diver/open water diver, Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) certified, and holds an international RYA power boat licence. He is also a certified co-leader in The ManKind Project (MKP), a progressive worldwide leadership-training organization. He has co-led numerous intensive MKP training sessions throughout the UK , Europe, North America, and Africa. In 2004, he won The ManKind Project’s prestigious ‘Ron Hering Mission of Service Award’. In 2010, he co-founded ‘Journeyman UK’ (Journeyman Mentoring Network Ltd), an affiliate chapter of the international ‘Boys To Men Mentoring Network’. Journeyman UK is a unique education charity and community-based mentoring network with a focus on “supporting boys and young men to become the adults they want to be”.

He has studied mixed martial arts for over four decades, including Judo, Fanchento Kung Fu, and Kickboxing.

Known by his peers and clients alike as a quirky but trustworthy, straight-speaking, intuitive, and impartial investigator, he has an innate ability to understand the fundamental overview of often-complex situations. He typically presents clients with perceptive, focused, and pragmatic resolutions to the most challenging problems and has a reputation for “pulling the rabbit out of the hat.”

Specialised Focus

  • Extortion and blackmail containment
  • Complex fraud investigation at all levels
  • Private covert AI-driven profiling
  • sophisticated crisis and reputation management
  • Family/matrimonial matters
  • Locating missing persons/debtors
  • Private security projects