Example Cases

Richard Egan and Jim Meyer have spent over 58 years advising and representing clients in some of the most high profile criminal cases seen in the English criminal courts system. Below is just a selection of the matters on which they have advised.

Richard represented Mr Jorsling who was charged with conspiracy to pervert the course of justice along with Rebecca Brooks and others. The case revolved around allegations that Rebecca Brooks, whilst editor of the News of the World newspaper, had overseen a criminal conspiracy to tap the phones of famous individuals as a source for newspaper stories. Mr Jorsling was part of the security team around Mrs Brooks and was alleged to have assisted her and her husband in the removal of computer and other evidence before the police could seize them. Mr Jorsling’s role in the case was highlighted in the national media who made much of his phone text quoting the film 'Where Eagles Dare' when he sent the message "Broadsword calling Danny Boy - the chicken is in the pot" after delivering the allegedly incriminating material. The defence made submissions that there was no case to answer by Mr Jorsling and eventually the Crown offered no evidence against him and the case of perverting the course of justice was dismissed.
Mr Dogan was charged with murder of his wife in a fatal knife attack. Forensic and CCTV evidence meant there was no doubt that he was responsible for the murder. The case was one in which the key legal issue was whether Mr Dogan was suffering from an abnormality of the mind at the time of the offence which would have been sufficient to diminish his responsibility for the murder. Mr Dogan had been suffering from depression for some months but had made no attempt to treat his condition. The defence expert forensic psychiatric report confirmed he was suffering from abnormality of his mind at the time of the murder. A prosecution forensic expert could reach no agreement with the defence as to whether Mr Dogan's abnormality of mind was sufficient to diminish his responsibility for the killing. During a lengthy trial of expert evidence, Mr Dogan’s health further deteriorated to the point where he became non-communicative.
Richard and Jim represented Dr Abdulla who was charged with conspiracy to murder. In 2007, Glasgow International Airport was attacked when Dr Abdulla and one other drove a Jeep loaded with propane canisters into the glass doors and set it ablaze in an attempt to create an explosion in the terminal and cause mass murder. Security bollards outside the entrance stopped the car from entering the terminal, although the doors were damaged. The car’s driver was severely burnt. Both suspects were apprehended by members of the public. The driver of the Jeep died from his burns. It was the first terrorist attack to take place in Scotland since the Lockerbie bombings. The Glasgow attack was then linked to the London car bombings 36 hours earlier, where two cars loaded with gas canisters were left outside Tiger Tiger nightclub in Haymarket, and also in Cockspur Street, which were busy areas of London, in an additional attempt to cause mass murder. Dr Abdulla was tried along with another doctor for conspiracy to murder. He was convicted and received a lengthy life sentence. His co-defendant was acquitted.
Mr S was charged with conspiracy to import and supply cocaine following a lengthy police drugs squad operation. Surveillance evidence linked with CCTV, telephone evidence and cell site demonstrated the use of a number of airport staff at Heathrow who were recruited by a drugs gang to assist in the by-passing of security measures at Heathrow that would allow large bundles of cocaine to pass through the airport without the usual security checks at customs. Mr S was one of the employees at Heathrow and pleaded guilty shortly before the trial. He received a lengthy custodial sentence.
The client was a financial director of a British Mining Company with contracts in Sierra Leone who is being investigated by the SFO for alleged fraud and corruption relating to mining rights in the African Republic. The case was linked to allegations of poor governance and corruption involving government officials and ministers from a former regime with cross allegations of politically motivated investigations.
The case involved a mother, Tania Clarence, who was charged with the murder of her disabled 3 children.  Richard was selected to defend her by the legal team at Investec Bank (where her husband Gary Clarence worked). It was considered whether Mrs Clarence was in her right mind at the time of the deaths and so one of the most well respected forensic psychiatrists was instructed to assess her at the police station and throughout the case.  He concluded that at the time of the killings she was indeed suffering from a severe depressive illness. The defence team subsequently offered guilty pleas to manslaughter on the basis of diminished responsibility which were accepted by the Crown after some months following reports and assessments made by their own medical experts who eventually agreed with the defence conclusions.  Following the acceptance of guilty pleas, the case was adjourned for sentence where the Crown still pushed for a custodial sentence stating that whilst Tania Clarence’s responsibility was diminished she still held a significant degree of responsibility for her actions based on the history of the case, and in view of evidence of pre-planning of the killings. They also submitted that Mrs. Clarence's failure to seek treatment for her illness was a factor in her culpability.  The defence submitted that her responsibility remained negligible and as such she should not be sentenced to prison but instead to a hospital order where her illness could be treated.  At the sentence hearing, two defence doctors gave evidence and lengthy submissions were made to the Judge in relation to sentence and mitigation. With regards to sentence, the Judge agreed with the defence submissions and consequently Mrs Clarence was sentenced to a hospital order as requested. The case was one which involved a number of complex challenges and the resulting hospital order was a significant achievement for the defence team. Richard continues to act for the family in the subsequent investigation into social services.
Richard acted for Cristiano Ronaldo in relation to a recent investigation following an allegation of common assault and criminal damage to a mobile phone of a young Everton supporter after Cristiano waved his hand at the fan as he walked off the pitch at the end of an Everton v Manchester United fixture. During the subsequent investigation Richard made representations and following an interview with the police and submissions by Richard the matter was dealt with by way of a caution.
The client was Wayne Couzens, the serving police officer who pleaded guilty to the rape and murder of Sarah Everard. The case attracted world-wide attention and led to a public enquiry and questions in the House of Commons. Mr Couzens was a serving firearms officer who used his police badge to force Sarah Everard into his hire vehicle on the streets of Clapham, London. After abducting her, he drove her to a remote spot in Kent where he raped her and then later murdered her. Her murder started a wider conversation around the safety of women on the streets and sexism at large in the police force and in society in general, leading to demonstrations on the streets and questions about the vetting of police officers.
Mr Bell was charged with rape following a sexual encounter at a nightclub. The case received extensive publicity, as Mr Bell was a Coronation Street actor whose stage name was Chris Quinten. The Crown alleged that Mr Bell acted in his capacity as an events facilitator to gain access to a private section of the nightclub. It was alleged that he used his famous name to coax a young woman into a private room where he plied her with alcohol and cocaine. It was then alleged that he raped her on the premises. Mr Bell pleaded not guilty and following a jury trial was acquitted of rape and indecent assault.
Richard represented a famous soap star who starred in one of the most popular ongoing television shows, who has been accused of conspiracy to rape in an incident nearly 40 years ago. After a number of interviews and defence submissions, a lengthy police investigation, and with further evidence provided to the police, no further action was taken. The identity of the client was kept discreet throughout.
Ms Clements was charged with a sophisticated fraud against the National Health Service. The fraud centred around allegations that a number of heart perfusionists (specialists in respiration during heart operations) conspired to overstaff their department at the NHS's expense, freeing senior members of their team to work at other hospitals for private fees. The allegations suggested that the group of health professionals enriched themselves to the tune of £1 million at the expense of the health service. The extent of the fraud was significantly disputed by the defence and following a lengthy trial the key defendants were found guilty on a limited basis of a significantly reduced fraud of around £300,000.
Ms Begum was charged with section 57 of the Terrorism Act. The defendant’s husband was arrested under section 5 of the Terrorism Act and the property was searched and items were seized which included a memory stick. After the examination of the memory stick it was found to contain several issues of the "Inspire" magazine by Al-Qaeda, calling upon Muslims to attack the United States and providing bomb making directions to commit mass murder. Ms Begum pleaded guilty on a basis and received a custodial sentence of 12 months.
Mr Taj and others were charged with conspiracy to recklessly damage property and endanger life. The defendants conspired to petrol bomb the home of a publisher who was due to publish a novel by a US author called the "Jewel of Medina" about the prophet Muhammad’s wife. The defendants were under surveillance by the security services, who had informed the victim of the potential attack. The defendants' conversations were covertly recorded by the security services. The defendants were arrested as they approached the property with a petrol can in a white bag. During the search police recovered extremist radical material, photos of the offices/residence of the publisher, and surveillance evidence of the defendants driving past the offices several times prior to the attack. The defendant was convicted and received a custodial sentence.
Richard acted for an 18-year-old who was accused of being part of a gang concerned with the exploitation of vulnerable girls aged between 13 and 16 years old. The girls were driven to locations around Banbury where they were alleged to have been subject to serious sexual assaults, including rape and gang rape. The allegations extended to the group using social media to identify and target vulnerable underage girls who would then be groomed for the use of the gang members to rape and sexually assault them at will. The Crown stated that many of the young victims were brainwashed into doing whatever was demanded of them. Following a lengthy trial at Oxford Crown Court, Mr Nae was acquitted of all charges. All the other defendants were found guilty.
The client was Mr Emmanuel who was tried for murder following the shooting of his associate in what the police alleged was a cocaine deal gone wrong. A shotgun was found next to the body at a London flat. Forensic evidence indicated that the shotgun was the murder weapon, and fingerprint experts were able to prove that Mr Emmanuel’s fingerprints were on the trigger and the butt of the weapon. Mr Emmanuel, who had been on the run since the murder, handed himself into the police. During a complex trial the defence alleged that the main prosecution witness was in fact the real killer. A site visit to the scene of the murder meant the defence were able to undermine the account given by the main prosecution witness, and particularly his explanation for blood being found on a door in the premises. Unused material in the case further indicated that a carpet fitter had reported to the police that he had seen a shotgun at the premises of the main prosecution witness some 6 weeks before the killing. The case was tried at the Old Bailey and Mr Emmanuel was acquitted of murder.
In 2006, Habib Ahmed and his wife from Manchester were charged with collecting information of potential terrorist targets and travelling to Pakistan to receive terrorist training and being a member of Al-Qaeda. Another defendant, an alleged associate of Habib Ahmed, was also charged with terrorism offences relating to directing a terrorist organisation (namely Al-Qaeda), possessing information useful to a terrorist, and possessing a rucksack which contained traces of explosives. Two of the defendants were under surveillance for several months by MI5 and there were covert recordings of their conversations while abroad involving other international agencies. Both Mr Habib Ahmed and his co-defendant were convicted of being members of Al-Qaeda after a very lengthy trial, while the defendant’s wife was acquitted of arranging funding for terrorism. Mr Habib and Ragzieb Ahmed received lengthy custodial sentences.
Richard acted for the guitarist in a famous rock band from the 1960/70s who was accused of historical indecent assault on a boy under 17. The incident was alleged to have occurred over 20 years ago and Richard acted for the client throughout the investigation. The police eventually took no further action in the matter.
Mr Asare was charged with the attempted murder of three police officers. He was seen in the London streets carrying a large knife and acting in an odd fashion. Armed police were called to placate him and it was alleged then that Mr Asare attempted to kill or seriously injure three police officers during a confrontation. Mr Asare was shot five times at point blank range using soft headed or "dum dum" bullets, and his survival after emergency surgery was said to be "miraculous". Following his release from hospital he was charged with attempted murder. At the trial the defence ran a case of diminished responsibility to murder and grievous bodily harm as it was clear that Mr Asare was suffering from a mental breakdown. Mr Asare also denied making any attempt to stab any of the police officers. After a trial he was acquitted of all charges by the jury.
Mr Khawaja and another were charged with section 5 of the Terrorism Act and solicitation to murder. They were stopped at Dover on their way back from Bulgaria and their phones were seized by officers and examined. They contained incriminating evidence in relation to the conflict in Syria. It was alleged Mr Khawaja while in Syria trained and fought with the militant group Riyad ul Tawhid, which had links to the so called Islamic State. He was pictured with severed heads during his period in Syria and considered to be in the combat zone. There were dozens of images of the defendant posing with automatic weapons and tanks. It was also alleged that the defendant faked his own death prior to returning to the UK then announced it on Instagram in order for his return to go undetected. The defendant also took part in making YouTube videos in order to recruit others to the war in Syria. Mr Khawaja pleaded to section 5 of the Terrorism Act and received a custodial sentence of 12 years.
Mr Dolan was charged, along with two others, with a sophisticated fraud in attempting to sell the Ritz hotel in London. He was prosecuted by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO). The allegations centred on an alleged conspiracy between lawyers, property developers, and unknown companies in foreign jurisdictions. The Ritz hotel site was offered for sale by the use of sophisticatedly forged documentation and highly trained con artists. A complex civil prosecution in the High Court resulted in three individuals being charged with a criminal conspiracy to commit fraud. During a three week trial, Mr Dolan was the only defendant acquitted by the jury of fraud.
Richard acted for the press-styled “Hound of Hounslow” Navinder Sarao, in relation to allegations that he was responsible for the world stock market “flash crash” by spoof trading, resulting in the trading markets spiralling downwards and wiping billions off share prices. It is alleged that Sarao made over £40 million. The case centred on whether Mr Sarao’s conduct amounted to a criminal offence in the UK and if so then should he be tried in the UK. Arguments were eventually heard at the High Court where it was decided that the conduct alleged could amount to the UK offence of fraud and that the appropriate tribunal to hear the matter would be in the USA. Mr Sarao then came to a voluntary arrangement with the US authorities to fly to their jurisdiction.
The client was a customs officer investigated in relation to one of the largest corruption investigations ever conducted in the UK, following the collapse of a large number of VAT carousel fraud trials. A seven year investigation resulted where allegations of high level corruption in Her Majesty’s Custom and Excise, the police, CPS and members of the bar were made. The allegations included a conspiracy to mislead courts, interfering with the course of justice, and providing perjured evidence to secure convictions whilst hiding crucial evidence from the defence. The scope of the investigation was vast, and included many thousands of pages of transcripts of numerous trials. No further action was taken against Mr X.
Mr Ali, an London Underground tube driver, was charged under section 5 of the Terrorism Act 2006. Mr Ali was accused of buying survival equipment, and booked flights to Pakistan intent on committing “violent jihad” in Afghanistan. The defendant was under surveillance by security services for a long period. During the search of the property, the police recovered a note to his wife allegedly advising her of his decision to go and fight in Afghanistan. Prior to being charged with a terrorism offence, Mr Ali was subject to a control order (Terrorism Prevention and Investigation Measures / TPIM). Mr Ali was tried at Snaresbrook Crown Court and was acquitted unanimously. After his trial, Mr Ali was made subject to a control order (TPIM).
Richard acted for the billionaire heiress and former wife of a famous financier. She was accused of being the key role in an elaborate international conspiracy to steal South African diamonds worth over 7 million pounds. In what is alleged to have been a sophisticated con, the plot line of the allegation read like a Hollywood film with fake Arab Sheikhs, fake Special Branch officers, and meetings for the exchange of diamonds in the penthouse apartments of five-star hotels. After a number of written submissions, negotiations, and meetings the police eventually took no further action and Richard's client was exonerated.
Richard is currently acting for a director of a major commercial bank who has been accused of rape. The matter is ongoing.
The client was a senior director at BAE, Britain’s largest arms company, in relation to an SFO investigation into allegations of international corruption by securing sales of armaments and weapons systems to foreign governments through the alleged use of bribes and favours to key politicians and decision makers. The investigation followed assertions that company representatives had secured contracts by the use of “black money” as aggressive incentive payments to key officials, in combination with heavy lobbying of potentially corrupt embassy officials. A whistle blower alleged a £60 million slush fund had been used for this purpose in company operations in Saudi Arabia, Chile, South Africa and the former Czech Republic. No further actions was taken against Mr Z .
Mrs Stokes was charged with fraud. It was alleged that she, along with the board of directors of a company, conspired to provide false information facilitating the company to be floated on the stock exchange causing significant loss to public investors. The allegations started as a number of civil lawsuits, which eventually led to criminal allegations that the defendants had contravened the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. The key evidence in the case centred on whether the defendants had in fact provided false information during due diligence of the company. Defence submissions that there was no evidence that Mrs Stokes had committed any fraud eventually led to the prosecution dropping the case against her and others.
Richard acted for Mr Gilliat who was accused of murder and arson in a case described by the Metropolitan Police as involving the most ‘exotic murder weapon’ they had ever encountered. Mr Gilliat had bludgeoned his ex-lover to death with a lapis lazouli semi-precious stone egg. After the murder, Mr Gilliat travelled home and attempted to set fire to his neighbour’s property with whom he had been having a long running property dispute. He then attempted to take his own life by shooting himself in the head with his own licensed shotgun. Mr Gilliat survived his suicide attempt and was charged and tried for murder and arson. The issue in the case was one of diminished responsibility and whether Mr Gilliat’s depressive illness amounted to a defence to murder on the basis that he was suffering from an abnormality of mind. Forensic psychiatrists for the defence found Mr Gilliat’s responsibility was diminished, however prosecution doctors could not agree with the diagnosis. Consequently Mr Gilliat was tried at the Old Bailey and, following a lengthy trial, he was acquitted of murder.
Mr Sawicki was charged with murder along with two others, following the grisly discovery of two badly beaten bodies which had been bound up with masking tape in their own home. The evidence suggested that the elderly couple had large amounts of cash hidden in their basement, and that the killers had been tipped off about the cache. It appeared the victims had been tied up and tortured to reveal the whereabouts of the cash. The police arrested Mr Sawicki following a tip off in the Polish community in London. In due course, the police found half a thumb print on the inside of part of the tape used to tie up the victims, along with a partial print on the inside of a glass door. Both prints matched Mr Sawicki’s, who pleaded guilty on the first day of his trial after a failed attempt to take his own life in custody. Interpol indicated he was wanted in connection with a series of similar murders in Europe. He received a life sentence.
Mr E was charged with money laundering in a case described by the Crown at the time as "the largest prosecution of its type ever brought". They alleged that the defendant was responsible for laundering close to a quarter of a billion pounds worth of criminal proceeds through the use of Bureau de Change businesses. The case documentation relating to tens of thousands of separate money transactions was voluminous, along with extensive computer records and surveillance material. Following careful consideration of the evidence, the Crown accepted a defence offer of a plea bargain by Mr E which limited his culpability to a reduced level of money laundering.
Irfan Naseer and others were charged under section 5 of the Terrorism Act. It was alleged the group were planning an attack to rival the 9/11 and 7/7 terror attacks. The group had planned to set off 8 bombs in rucksacks by using timers to detonate the bombs and commit mass murder. The terror plot was believed to be the most significant since the 2006 conspiracy to blow up transatlantic airlines. This was an intelligence lead investigation by the security services, and the group were under surveillance and their conversations were recorded covertly. The defendant and his co-defendant had travelled to Pakistan and discussed receiving training on bomb making from members of Al-Qaida operatives and recorded a martyrdom video. It was alleged the defendant had returned to put the training he received in to practice and commit mass murder. It was alleged that some members of the group were also to be sent out to Pakistan by the defendant to receive training and that he raised funds for a terrorist purpose. After a lengthy trial lasting three months, the defendant was convicted and received a life sentence.
Mr Hasnath was charged with section 57 of the Terrorism Act. The defendant was under surveillance by security services and they believed he was a member of a radical group in the UK. The defendant was stopped while riding his bike and arrested. Police seized a memory stick from the defendant. After the examination of the memory stick it was found to found 6 issues of "Inspire" magazine by Al-Qaeda, calling for attacks in the United States and providing bomb making directions to commit mass murder. Mr Hasnath pleaded guilty on a basis and received a custodial sentence of 14 months.
Richard acted for Mr Malcolm Archer who is a former director of music at St Paul's Cathedral and the Head of Music at Winchester College. He has directed the music at state occasions including the Queen's 80th birthday service. Mr Archer was charged with 2 counts of indecent assault and gross indecency with a boy under 16. Following his trial at Chelmsford Crown Court, Mr Archer was acquitted of all charges.
Richard acted for Professor Raivich who was charged with a number of sexual assaults against four women. The professor was a world-leading brain scientist researching brain injuries in unborn children. The case was highly unusual in that in his spare time, Professor Raivich, acted as an unlicensed but legal sperm donor providing samples to a large number of women, and fathering over 60 children in the process. He also assisted some of the women with the process of artificial insemination. Some months after a consensual donation, one of his clients complained on the internet forum that his methodology amounted to sexual assault. Others on the forum agreed and four women eventually complained to the police and the professor was charged with ten counts of sexual assault. After a lengthy trial, in which a large number of women “donees” gave evidence on behalf of the Professor and expert evidence for the defence and the crown was contradictory, the jury were unable to reach verdicts on eight of the charges. However, they returned guilty verdicts on two minor charges for which Professor Raivich received a suspended sentence.
Mr Singh was a journalist who had previously worked at the News of the World newspaper. He was investigated in relation to Operation Weeting for hacking the phones of the famous for stories to be used in his gossip column at the paper. He was also alleged to have been involved in the payment of public officials for stories. After a lengthy investigation and a trial of his co-accused, Andrew Coulson, during which the Crown informant alleged Mr Singh had conspired with Mr Coulson to obtain stories by hacking, the prosecution eventually dropped the case against Mr Singh.
Mr Dawood was charged, along with others, with conspiracy to conceal criminal property, money laundering and obtaining property by deception. It was alleged that the defendants had laundered drugs money through vast purchases of property and the formation of companies through which they could purchase large tracts of land. The Crown alleged that planning permission would be sought on the land and it would be built on and resold at significant profit whilst also laundering the proceeds of crime. They were also alleged to have been involved in the importation of drugs from Spain and the laundering of the profits from the resultant drug sales. Mr Dawood was tried and was acquitted of all charges.
Sunawar was a Corporal in the Gurkha Regiment of the British Army. He was accused of the murder of the nephew of the Prime Minister of Belize when stationed there on a military posting. The allegation revolved around a fight that had started in a local bar between soldiers of the Special Air Service (SAS) regiment and a number of Gurkha soldiers. During the fight, some members of the local community became involved and a number of Gurkha soldiers were accused of beating a local civilian to the ground and striking him whilst prone. The civilian was taken to hospital but subsequently died of his injuries. Eyewitness reports indicated a number of Gurkha soldiers being involved and Sunuwar was one of those charged and faced a court martial trial for murder. At the subsequent hearing, eyewitness accounts were found to be contradictory and unreliable. Eventually the case against Sunuwar was dismissed.
Mr Brown was charged with 14 others as a result of police Operation Chopito. The operation centred on police attempts to infiltrate a drug trafficking conspiracy. The case evidence indicated a conspiracy between the defendants to import, traffic, and distribute large quantities of cocaine and ammunition facilitated by the use of corrupt British Airways staff. The Crown described the gang as an ‘extremely sophisticated international operation using a global network of criminal gangs’. Cocaine seizures in Mexico, Canada, India, USA, and the Bahamas were all linked to the conspiracy. Mr Brown pleaded guilty after the service of damning cell site evidence linking him to phones and locations used in the importations.
Mr Lotfi Raissi was the subject of proceedings brought by the United States Government to extradite him for terrorism. It was alleged that he was the man who trained the four hijackers who flew planes into the World Trade Centre and The Pentagon on 9/11. He was the first person under new legislation to be held for a full seven days and interviewed by anti-terrorist police about his involvement in the terrorist attack on the United States (US), after which he was served with an extradition warrant and appeared in custody at Bow Street Magistrates Court. The allegations against him were front page news in every newspaper in Europe and the US describing him as the pilot who trained the hijackers. The Crown, on behalf of the US government, confirmed that he was linked to hijackers by phone records, flight manual records, independent witness evidence, and video footage showing him with Hani Nanjour who was the hijacker who piloted American Airlines flight 77 into the Pentagon. Mr Raissi was described as the architect of 9/11. The defence set about assessing and then discrediting the allegations, and after many months of investigative work in the UK and the US it became clear that the case against Mr Raissi was based on speculation, coincidence, dubious identification, and in some cases simply untruths. At each hearing the defence were able to erode further aspects of the US government's case, and once much of the evidence had been discredited the US government eventually conceded that “they would not at this time be in a position to pursue any terrorism charge” against him. However, they still proceeded with their extradition request on other matters. Mr Raissi was bailed and in due course the court dismissed the remaining extradition charges against him. James Lewis QC who was lead counsel for the American States Government, stated outside court that he felt the defence had done an extraordinarily professional job under very difficult circumstances. As a result, Richard was voted the lawyer of the year by the Legal Aid Lawyers' Association and the Judges, headed by Cherie Blair, stated: "in the face of world-wide hostile press coverage, and facing the might of the US government, Mr Egan dismantled the extradition case against Mr Raissi until the magistrate released him, completely exonerated."
Mr Inglis had been tried and convicted of the murder of his girlfriend by repeatedly striking her with a lampshade. At his original trial there had been no attempt to assess the effect Mr Inglis’ bipolar disorder may have had on his mental state at the time of the killing. After being instructed to consider an appeal, papers obtained from previous solicitors indicated that a defence of diminished responsibility should have been run at his original trial. After instructing two forensic psychiatrists, their reports indicated that mistakes had been made by previous doctors involved in the case and concluded that Mr Inglis’ responsibility may have been diminished at the time of the murder. The subsequent appeal was successful and his conviction for murder was quashed, with a retrial ordered.
The defendant was arrested and charged with sections 5  and 58 of the Terrorism Act. The defendant had been in contact with those who were convicted of the airline bomb plot, and in possession of radical extremist material including a CD containing files with instructions on how to make explosives. The defendant’s case was dismissed by the Judge after the defence had made half-time submissions during his trial.
Mr Lock was accused of an armed robbery with accomplices at a post office in Essex. A sawn-off shotgun left at the scene was found negative for fingerprints, but Mr Lock was charged following information provided to the police. The prosecution also produced a witness who was a cellmate of Mr Lock whilst on remand, who claimed Mr Lock had confessed the crime to him. Under cross-examination during the trial, Mr Lock’s cellmate refused to provide details of the crime for which he was in prison, namely that he had cut up his wife and put her in a box. As a consequence, the trial of Mr Lock collapsed. During a retrial, the cellmate witness was abandoned by the prosecution. However, Mr Lock was in due course convicted of armed robbery following a majority direction to the jury by the trial judge.
The client is an executive director of a Congolese bank who is subject to an international investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) into fraud, corruption, and alleged money laundering activities of individuals suspected of obtaining state assets through corrupt relationships with Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) officials. The investigation is ongoing and extremely sensitive, and covers a number of foreign jurisdictions as well as the DRC.
Mr B was charged with a series of armed robberies of jewellers' shops following an extensive police surveillance operation on criminal gangs throughout UK and Europe. Police set up a well resourced and extensive surveillance team following gang members over several months. During the operation, an armed robbery took place under police surveillance following which most members of the gang were arrested. Telephone cell site and computer evidence combined with the surveillance operation, presented an overwhelming case to which Mr B eventually pleaded guilty. The case was described by the prosecution as ‘the biggest operation ever conducted by the flying squad’.
Richard acted for a professional footballer accused of raping his girlfriend's mother. After a week- long trial, he was acquitted. However, importantly for him and rather extraordinarily, his matter was dealt with discreetly and was able to be kept out of the press. The lurid allegations and mother/daughter dynamic would have been explosive material for the tabloid media and the fact that Richard managed to take the case all the way to trial without any media exposure was almost as important for the client as winning the case. He is currently is playing for a European team.
The client was Arthur Simpson-Kent, the “serial killer” who was convicted of murdering his wife Sian Blake (an actress in EastEnders). Police found the family buried in the back garden of their home, with forensic evidence showing that they had been bludgeoned to death and stabbed through the throat. Mr Simpson-Kent contacted the firm from Nigeria once he had been arrested on the run and was facing extradition proceedings to bring him back to the UK. Richard acted for him on his arrest at Heathrow Airport having not contested his extradition, and thereafter in proceedings at the Central Criminal Court where he admitted the killings. In what was a difficult and emotionally fraught case, the defence case rested on whether there was evidence of insanity or diminished responsibility and experts were instructed to assess the defendant and his state of mind at the time of the killings that he admitted carrying out.
Mr Javed was charged with section 57 of the Terrorism Act. The defendant had been previously convicted for solicitation to murder and was at the time serving his remaining sentence on licence. During a search, and as part of his licence conditions, the police seized his computers and external hard drive. After examination of the hard drives it was found to contain terror manuals - "39 Ways to Participate in Jihad", "Zaad e Mujahid" and "Incitement of the heroic mujahedeen in reviving the tradition of assassinations". Mr Javed pleaded guilty to possessing the manual "Zaad e Mujhadid" and received a custodial sentence of 12 months.
Richard acted for Nathan Wyatt who was investigated in relation to a conspiracy to steal the personal photographs of Pippa Middleton, the sister of the Duchess of Cambridge, and a number of other offences related to dark web activity. After pleading guilty to 23 counts of fraud and receiving a 3 year prison sentence, Mr Wyatt was in turn investigated for a number of other dark web activities in the USA by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). He was extradited in relation to further allegations of fraud using the dark web, and is alleged to be connected to some of the largest frauds perpetrated by on line “dark web warriors” and to a group called the “Dark Overlords”.
Richard acted for Mr Bell who was charged with rape following a sexual encounter at a nightclub. The case received extensive publicity as Mr Bell was a Coronation Street actor whose stage name was Chris Quenton. The Crown alleged that Mr Bell acted in his capacity as an events facilitator to gain access to a private section of the nightclub. It was alleged that he used his famous name to coax a young woman into a private room where he plied her with alcohol and cocaine. It was then alleged that he raped her on the premises. Mr Bell pleaded not guilty and following a jury trial was acquitted of rape and indecent assault.
Mr RP was faced with a prosecution for conspiracy to import cocaine and assisting others to obtain the benefit of drug trafficking. The case generated a huge quantity of evidence and was the result of three merged police operations all joining together to become Operation Bogota. The prosecution relied heavily on a “supergrass”, or police informant, given the alias of John Black. Mr Black gave fundamental inside information of the money laundering operation of an enormous drug cartel based in Columbia. Following extensive defence investigations, it was established that the police supergrass had hidden significant evidence of his own involvement in drug supply, importation, and money laundering. Numerous court hearings relating to the lack of disclosure by the prosecution eventually resulted in the Crown abandoning the evidence provided by the supergrass in the case. The abandonment of this evidence resulted in Mr RP pleading guilty to a significantly lesser role than he was originally indicted for, and a guilty plea to the supply of class A drugs was accepted by the Crown. The importation of cocaine and money laundering charges were abandoned.
Richard and Jim acted for a businessman who was prosecuted by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) for alleged insider dealing following the takeover of a high profile company. It was alleged that the defendants used specialist and discreet inside knowledge of the takeover in order to purchase large numbers of shares in the company shortly before the deal was concluded, resulting in significant personal gains. Expert evidence focussed on the extent to which any evidence of the takeover was in the public domain.
Richard acted for the daughter of a billionaire property magnate and philanthropist who was alleged to have imported and supplied cocaine and cannabis after concealing the drugs in suitcases and bringing them back from Dubai. She was arrested as part of Operation Capulet involving a widespread surveillance operation linking the importation of drugs to a number of organised London criminal gangs. Large quantities of cannabis and cocaine were found in the client's flat and her flight records showed regular trips to Barbados and Dubai. Text messages recovered by police suggested drugs importation and supply. Richard and his team made legal submissions at the start of the trial in relation to disclosure and as a result the Crown were forced to offer no evidence and the case was thrown out.
Jim and Richard acted for Mr Ahmed Ali who, along with others, was charged with conspiracy to blow up transatlantic airliners mid-Atlantic. There were a total of twenty-four arrests in London, Birmingham, and High Wycombe, and seventeen were charged with terrorism offences. Seven were charged with the main conspiracy to blow up planes and conspiracy to murder, and Richard and the team acted for the first four on the indictment. It was alleged that each bomber would board a plane with the necessary ingredients and equipment (there were seven flights to North America targeted). They would then construct the devices while on board the plane in mid-flight and detonate them causing mass murder over the Atlantic and causing severe disruption to the aviation industry and to the economy as a whole. This alleged plot was regarded as being orchestrated by Al-Qaeda, with some of the defendants receiving training in Pakistan. During the search of properties, police recovered eight suicide videos, bomb making equipment and chemicals such as hydrogen peroxide and flight timetables for flights to North America. There were three trials held in relation to the main conspirators charged with conspiracy to murder. In the first trial the jury could not reach verdicts on conspiracy to blow up planes but found Mr Ali guilty of conspiracy to murder. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) made a decision to re-try Ali and some of the defendants again on conspiracy to blow up planes and others for conspiracy to murder. After a lengthy litigation process in relation to adverse publicity and being tried twice for the same offence, the court directed the defendants could be re-tried. All seven defendants were re-tried on conspiracy to blow up planes and conspiracy to murder. Three were convicted on both charges while four were acquitted of blowing up planes but with no verdict on conspiracy to murder. There was then a third trial of the four suspects who were re-tried on the conspiracy to murder charge and were all found guilty of conspiracy to murder. All suspects received lengthy life sentences.
Richard acted for James Miller, the first ever prosecution by the CPS with Trading Standards for a conspiracy to supply grey market and fake goods. The law in this area was unclear, and the supply of grey goods had never been prosecuted before in the criminal courts. Consequently the case went all the way to the Supreme Court who ruled that trading in grey market goods was a criminal offence. After acting for 3 years on the defence, the prosecution case against James Miller collapsed following defence legal submissions during the first two days of trial. The CPS and police agreed to pay jointly for an application for costs submitted by the defence on behalf of Mr Miller
Mr Munir Farooqi was charged, along with others, with section 5 of the Terrorism Act 2006 and solicitation to murder. Mr Farooqi ran two dawa stalls: one in Longsight, Manchester, and the other in the city centre where he distributed leaflets, CDs, DVDs in relation to Islam and would invite individuals who were interested in Islam back to his home for further discussions. Mr Farooqi and others were charged after an investigation by Greater Manchester Police which included two undercover officers posing as Muslim converts who had spent several months with Mr Farooqi on his dawa stall and visiting him at home. All the conversations were recorded in audio and video. Mr Farooqi was a former Taliban fighter who had travelled to fight against the coalition forces but was never prosecuted in the UK. After a very lengthy trial, Mr Farooqi was convicted of section 5 of Terrorism Act and solicitation to murder and received a life sentence.
Richard has been instructed by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to act for ten different British Army veterans who are being investigated for the alleged murder and attempted murder of civilians during the troubles in Northern Ireland between 1972 and 1982. Richard has been liaising with the police service of Northern Ireland and has represented all of his clients in very lengthy interviews related to these historical allegations. Due to the age of the clients and the antiquity of the evidence, the cases posed significant challenges and there have been a number of political aspects which have added to the complexities.
The client was Mr Valent who was charged with armed robbery following a raid by an Eastern European gang at Graff’s Jewellers in New Bond Street. The CCTV evidence showed the gang, who did not wear masks, holding up the exclusive store using automatic weapons. They left the scene with over £40 million worth of precious jewels which was not recovered. None of the robbers were captured at the scene. Some weeks later, security staff at Graff’s identified Mr Valent as one of the robbers and he was arrested whilst visiting another expensive jewellery shop. Examination of the CCTV evidence identified Mr Valent as one of the robbers, although he denied it was him. The defence instructed a facial mapping expert who eventually concluded that Mr Valent, whilst strikingly similar to the man in the CCTV footage, was in fact a different man. The prosecution refused to accept the evidence and consequently the trial was adjourned to enable them to instruct their own expert. Two months later the Crown’s own expert confirmed the findings of the defence and the prosecution dropped the case against Mr Valent who was then released from custody. The gang responsible for the raid was subsequently arrested and convicted some months after Mr Valent's release.
Pa Jobe was charged with sections 57 and 58 of the Terrorism Act 2006, after police seized computers, electronic equipment including CDs, DVDs which contained training manuals and footage of a police building. Mr Jobe admitted to four counts of possessing a document or record containing information likely to be useful to a person committing or preparing an act of terrorism. Mr Jobe received a lengthy custodial sentence.
Mr T was one of eight defendants prosecuted in relation to an armed robbery of Graff’s Jewellers in New Bond Street. The armed gang wore disguises and stole over £30 million worth of gems which were never recovered. One member of staff was kidnapped from the store and shots were fired from the street as the gang made their escape. Telephone evidence, CCTV and informant evidence led the police to a number of individuals who were arrested and faced a trial for armed robbery and kidnapping. Mr T was eventually found guilty by majority verdict following a trial.
Richard acted in Operation Marchwood for Jack Shepherd “The Speedboat Killer” who was tried for manslaughter by gross negligence relating to the death by drowning of his passenger on the river Thames. Mr Shepherd jumped bail before his trial and the case attracted international media coverage as the hunt for Shepherd became a tabloid obsession with the Daily Mail launching a Daily Mail Campaign offering a significant cash reward for information on his whereabouts. Mr Egan was subject to death threats which resulted in questions in the House of Commons with the Bar Counsel of England and Wales and the Law Society providing press releases in support of Mr Egan and defence lawyers in general. A campaign by the Law Society – “We are Richard Egan” was launched and Mr Egan was interviewed by the BBC about the case and how the intense media coverage had caused significant problems for the fairness of the proceedings.
The client was a prominent millionaire antiques dealer who was charged with strangling to death his seven-year-old daughter. The Crown alleged that Mr Peters attacked his daughter with a dressing gown cord while they were alone at the family home near Wimbledon. Mr Peters was remanded into a secure hospital. The case went before the Old Bailey, but was halted 4 days into the evidence when Mr Peters insisted on entering a guilty plea despite significant evidence in his defence being available. He was assessed to have been of sound mind at the time of entering his plea. Mr Peters’ family approached Richard to act following his successful defence of Tania Clarence in a similar case the previous year.
Mr Chowdhury was charged with section 5 of the Terrorism Act and conspiracy to cause explosions. This was an intelligence lead operation by the security services and the group were under surveillance. The evidence consisted of covert recording of conversations between the group, surveillance, and evidence obtained from electronic devices including extremist material and several issues of the "Inspire" magazines of Al-Qaeda. The group discussed launching a "Mumbai style" atrocity and bombing the London Stock Exchange in the recorded conversations. During the search, the police recovered bomb making manuals, an organisational structure chart of terror cell and a hand written hit list containing the details of Boris Johnson, the Dean of St Paul’s Cathedral, details of the layouts of the American Embassy and the London Stock Exchange. The group were all members of radical groups in the UK. Mr Chowdhury and others pleaded guilty to preparing acts of terrorism, by planning to plant an improvised explosive device in the toilets of the London Stock Exchange and he was sentenced to a lengthy term of imprisonment.
Mr Shajira was charged under section 17 of the Terrorism Act 2000, where money and shoes were made available to another he knew, or had reasonable cause to suspect would be used for terrorism. The defendant was stopped under schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000 at Gatwick Airport as part of an investigation involving his brother, Amar Shajira, who the police believed had travelled to Syria to join the Islamic State. During the Schedule 7, stop the defendant's phones were seized and examined and were found to contain evidence of a variety of messaging platforms used by the defendant and his brother for communication. The messages indicated that the defendant’s brother was in Syria fighting for the Islamic State and was asking for money and a pair of trainers. It was alleged that monies raised and the trainers purchased were provided to an individual travelling to Syria on a convoy who would meet the defendant’s brother to pass on. The defendant pleaded guilty to purchasing trainers and is awaiting sentence.
Richard assisted and advised a Peer of the House of Lords in relation to allegations of historical sexual assault and using his position to obtain sexual services. The investigation led to interviews by the House of Lords committee for standards but no action was taken.
Mr Dalgleish was charged with being part of a conspiracy to import class A drugs, namely heroin. The Crown described the case at the time as the largest single importation ever to be prosecuted, and involved the smuggling of over 400 kilos of heroin into the UK hidden in enormous consignments of cat litter. Mr Dalgleish rented the premises in South Wales, where the consignment was delivered and stored. The police had been tipped off and commenced an operation some months before the importation with 150 undercover police officers who were assigned the task of following and recording all the movements of the conspirators and the importation of the drugs. On the day of the knock, the police arrested the gang and recovered the huge shipment on Mr Dalgleish’s premises. Mr Dalgleish and all the conspirators pleaded not guilty but were convicted following a lengthy trial. Mr Dalgleish’s case that he had believed the shipment to contain illegal imported tobacco was not accepted by the jury.
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