Alistair is an energetic and highly competitive crime and regulatory lawyer of 12 years PQE with a track record of winning cases, chiefly by relentlessly pursuing and exploiting the flaws in the case against his client.
In recent months, Alistair has successfully defended:
- Three clients in an alleged multi-million pound fraudulent 'land-banking' conspiracy trial R v Forte & ors 2015 Southwark Crown Court. Following six weeks of evidence, the jury acquitted all three of Alistair's clients within two hours deliberation.
- A client charged with sexual grooming and sexual activity with a child. Alistair's client was acquitted by the jury in under an hour. R v MR 2016 Woolwich Crown Court.
- A salesman charged with the rape of a colleague. Following a thorough defence investigation and painstaking gathering of evidence to rebut each detail of the complainant's account, the jury acquitted Alistair's client in just under 20 minutes. R v AM 2015 Chester Crown Court.
- A young entrepreneur accused of a series of serious assaults outside a London nightclub. One of the charges was dismissed prior to trial, and the Prosecution eventually offered no evidence on the other two counts. The Prosecution were then ordered to pay over £4,000 in wasted costs back to Alistair's client. R v TA 2015 Blackfriars Crown Court.
- An immigrant worker who obtained a tenancy and subsequently the 'right to buy' his Council flat in the 1990s by using a false identity. He was charged with two counts of fraud against the Local Authority. The case was effectively thrown out by the Judge on the first day of trial despite Alistair's client admitting the use of a false identity. R v SH 2015
Professional disciplinary work
- A dentist and owner of a large Home Counties practice who, facing accusations of fraudulent claims for non-existent NHS work, appeared before the General Dental Council facing interim suspension from practice. Alistair’s client took a pro-active approach in defending himself. Following representation both during the NHS fraud investigation and before the GDC, Alistair’s client was allowed to continue practicing pending the outcome of the NHS investigation, albeit with conditions. The case is ongoing.
- A social worker accused of committing financial irregularities against a vulnerable man with dementia whilst also failing to have him mentally assessed. Proceedings were brought by the Health and Care Professions Council. After two days of evidence and legal submissions, the Competence and Conduct Committee found no case to answer. Alistair personally conducted the advocacy for his client. HCPC v AL 2015.
- A carer working in a Home for the Elderly who was convicted at summary trial of Ill-treatment a patient suffering from dementia under s44 Mental Capacity Act 1995. Alistair took on the case post-conviction, represented his client at sentencing and then lodged an appeal against conviction on the basis that the magistrates had placed undue weight on the testimony of one eyewitness. The appeal then uncovered matters giving rise to serious concerns about the credibility of that witness. The Crown decided not to oppose the appeal, and the conviction was duly quashed. R v MT, 2014 Northampton Crown Court
Business and commercial reputation work.
- A company director who admitted VAT fraud over a two year period amounting to £33,000 and involving the creation of false invoices from non-existent companies. Given early and thorough advice, Alistair’s client pleaded guilty and received a suspended sentence of imprisonment. He was not disqualified as a director and continued operating his company. R v GO 2016 Inner London Crown Court.
- A company director and owner of a well-established stonemasonry business who had been prosecuted by Trading Standards and sentenced excessively by magistrates, ordering him to pay almost £14,000 within 7 days. Alistair took on the case post-sentence, lodged an appeal against sentence and successfully deferred the payment terms in the interim. The appeal was later successful, reducing the total monies owed by £6,000 whilst also allowing Alistair’s client 8 months to pay the reduced sum. In the interim, Alistair also challenged the reporting of the case by a local publication and on the Local Authority’s website, both of which amended their articles. EBC v NB 2016 Isleworth Crown Court.
- A businesswoman covertly-recorded by police whilst allegedly burning her father's business documents during a police investigation into his affairs. Charged with perverting the course of justice, Alistair's client was unanimously acquitted. R v KC 2015 Southwark Crown Court.
Alistair's Other Notable Cases Include:
- R v RS 2012-2014
£246million drugs-cutting enterprise prosecuted by the Serious Crime Agency (now the National Crime Agency ['NCA'])). RS was the only defendant to avoid conviction in the main offence, following defence expert re-analysis of substances seized and financial analysis showing RS made no money from the matter. RS avoided imprisonment, while the three other defendants received a total of 22 years.
- R v CD 2011-2013
Lead defendant in a £35millon land-banking fraud conspiracy. CD alleged to have been the office manager and financial manager of a land-banking enterprise over a 5 year period. Arguments turned on the specific conduct that could amount to fraudulent misrepresentation where the legal title to the land is in fact transferred for an agreed price.
- R v GA 2010-2011
£13million pan-European boiler room fraud. GA was first on indictment of nine Defendants and alleged organiser of the global fraud. A detailed Basis of Plea and Goodyear negotiation led to an indication of 5 years imprisonment prior to trial. Confiscation Proceedings involved rebutting assertions of hidden assets, part of which turned on the apparent profit share between defendants.
- R v AR 2009-2010
Defence team in an insider dealing prosecution brought by the Financial Services Authority. Client was a solicitor alleged to have invested in a pharmaceutical company takeover on the basis of secret information from another solicitor overseeing the deal. It was the first FSA prosecution for insider dealing to end in an acquittal.
In the notable authority of R v Porter (2006) 2 Cr App R 25 Alistair successfully appealed against a conviction. The appeal turned on the question of whether one can possess deleted computer files.
Alistair now specialises in privately-funded crime and related litigation and advice. Alistair was previously an established campaigner for criminal legal aid in his capacity as committee member of the London Criminal Courts Solicitors Association. Alistair also believes the regime of costs recovery for successful defendants is acutely unfair and in dire need of reform.
If you would like to contact Alistair directly, please send him an email.