CRIMINAL DEFENCE BARRISTER BLOG

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Special Procedure Production Orders - How practice has not caught up with the law

Applications for special procedure production orders are some of the most common applications before the Crown Court. Many Crown Courts will hear a few applications in a 9:30am list before trials or case management hearings and each numbered application can contain any number of substantive sub-applications against different institutions. Most applications for special production orders are not opposed as they are made as against financial or other institutions who will not produce material without such an order and will not oppose the order being sought.

Monday, December 01, 2014

Fraud Trial Success

Quentin appeared at Isleworth Crown Court on behalf of SP, a University student accused of perpetuating a large scale eBay Fraud involving the cloning of credit cards and the misuse of Transport For London Oyster Cards. Following the close of the prosecution case Quentin argued that the case on the first and most serious count on the indictment should be withdrawn from the jury. The judge agreed and the count was withdrawn from the jury and a Not Guilty verdict was entered on her behalf.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Health and Safety Sentencing Success

Quentin appeared on behalf of FA who had been the Principal Contractor on a large scale commercial building project in South East London. Following the collapse of a structure at the site a 92 year old woman suffered near fatal injuries. The defendant pleaded guilty to an offence under regulation 28(2) of the Construction (Design and Management ) Regulations 2007.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Court of Appeal Victory

Quentin appeared in the Court of Appeal Criminal Division, instructed by Stokoe Partnership Solicitors on behalf of FI who had been convicted of a s47 ABH offence. Quentin successfully submitted that the judge had misapplied the relevant sentencing guidelines and the sentence was reduced in length by six months.

Monday, November 10, 2014

VAT Fraud and Missing Trader Intra-Community Fraud, MTIC Fraud

VAT fraud is big business. How big? Well it is very difficult to estimate the exact amount of money that is defrauded but the case of Federation of Technological Industries estimated that in 2002-03 the cost to the United Kingdom taxpayer was between £1.65 and £2.64 billion. By 2005-6 an EU think tank estimated that this figure had increased to some £10 billion. Read further to find out more..

Friday, November 07, 2014

An Example of a Typical Driving Case Study

Mr N was arrested on a Friday evening just outside Manchester. Two police officers on foot stopped him in his work van in a car park outside a fish and chip shop; the police had received a tip off. He was taken to the police station where he was subject to the breath test procedure and was found to be considerably over the drink drive limit. He was arrested and charged with drink driving. Mr N travelled all over the UK with his work and needed his licence for his work; he knew that if he lost his licence he would lose his job and his livelihood. Read further to find out more..

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Can I change a plea of guilty?

Changes to the criminal justice system of late have been very much focussed on encouraging defendants to plead guilty. ‘Early guilty plea’ schemes have been rolled out across the country and a full discount for pleading guilty is only available if the plea is entered at the first opportunity, often before the evidence has been served by the prosecution in proper and full form. Read further to find out more ..

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fraud by failing to disclose information

Section 1 of the Fraud Act 2006 relates to the offence of failing to disclose information. The offence is wide ranging and can cover a number of circumstances. An example would be where a person makes an insurance claim for a ring that they believed had been stolen. They report this to their insurance company and make a claim. They subsequently receive an insurance payout of £15,000 for the ring. Read further to find out more..

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What do I do if I receive a Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 disclosure notice?

The Police and HMRC are increasingly using their powers under the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 to require information from innocent parties who are not accused of a criminal offence but who can be compelled by law to provide information whether they like it or not. Read further to find out more ..

Friday, October 10, 2014

What to do if I am accused of VAT fraud?

If you are being investigated or have been charged with an offence of VAT fraud it is essential that you seek specialist legal representation at an early stage. How the matter is conducted from the outset will shape the course of the case against you. Read further to find out more ..

Friday, October 03, 2014

Example of a VAT Fraud in Action

If you are being investigated or have been charged with an offence of VAT fraud it is essential that you seek specialist legal representation at an early stage. How the matter is conducted from the outset will shape the course of the case against you. Careful consideration of the evidence is essential as well as an excellent working knowledge of this sort of case and experience in dealing with HMRC and the CPS. Read further to find out more ..

Monday, September 15, 2014

Cautionary tale about having someone else take your penalty points

Taking penalty points is a serious criminal offence and perverting the course of justice. It was all over the news a short while ago. But now the convictions of Chris Huhne and Vicky Price for perverting the course of justice have faded in time and are no longer in the public consciousness the courts are once again seeing the return of people accused of perverting the course of justice due to others ‘taking their points’. Read further to find out more..

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Witness intimidation

Witness intimidation is a serious offence and a conviction for the offence will, unless the offence is fleeting and in the heat of the moment, there is a high likelihood that any convicted defendant will end up with a sentence of imprisonment unless handled with the utmost skill and judgement. Read further to find out more..

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Success in Work at Height Regulations trial

Quentin acted in the case of the Health and Safety Executive v Mark Hayes, a trial at Southwark Crown Court. The case centred around an allegation of a breach of the defendant's duties under Regulation 4 of the Work At Height Regulations 2005 in respect of scaffolding works. Read further to find out more..

Wednesday, September 03, 2014

What to do if I am summoned for driving without insurance?

What to do if I am summonsed for driving without insurance? It is a criminal offence for a person to “use” a motor vehicle on a road or “cause” or “permit” any other person to use it on a road while uninsured. These offences can only be dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court and are typically punishable with a fine and the imposition of between 6 and 8 penalty points on your licence or a disqualification from driving. Despite the fact that these are “summary only” offences that can only be dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court, they are treated seriously.. Read further to find out more..

Monday, August 11, 2014

Death by Dangerous Driving

Causing death by dangerous driving is the most serious driving offence that you can be prosecuted for. If you are being investigated for this offence, have been charged or are under suspicion it is essential that you get legal representation. The representation you will require will need to be not just a ‘criminal’ lawyer but a lawyer with specialism in Road Traffic Offences.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Housing Fraud acquittal

G O-M was a lady with no previous convictions accused of a fraud carried out upon the London Borough of Southwark. Mr Hunt's client had maintained her innocence throughout. The matter related to a large investigation into housing fraud where an employee of Southwark Council had already pleaded guilty to various offences. Read more..

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

What is exceptional hardship?

Disqualification is generally compulsory. However, if you are able to persuade the court that there would be exceptional hardship amounting if you lose your licence they may allow you to keep your licence despite the fact that you have 12 penalty points or more..

Monday, July 21, 2014

Success in 'Asian Grooming Ring' trial

SH, an Asian male of good character was accused along with 17 others of being part of ‘Operation Bromelia’ a well publicised investigation into an alleged ‘ring’ of Asian males accused of sexual offences committed against young women in the Coventry area, Read more..

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Update on Financial Penalties for Motorway Offences

Government is currently considering a formal discussion to propose some changes on the legislations for the traffic offenders. According to BBC, drivers who speed on motorways could face a fine up to £10,000 under new proposals for England and Wales. Read this to find out more..