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I qualified as a solicitor in 1991 after spending half of my training in the field of criminal defence. It was an area of law that I enjoyed the most during my training, so after qualification it was the obvious choice to specialise in.
I have experience of cases involving allegations of murder, rape and gang-related violence including the use of firearms. I regularly act on behalf of people accused of less serious criminal activity. Much of my caseload consists of thefts, public disorder, domestic violence and traffic offences.
I am frequently at the police station or in the Magistrates Court and prepare my cases for Higher Courts Advocates to speak on behalf of my clients at the Crown Court and sometimes the Court of Appeal. I endeavour to get the best results at every stage of the process. I am particularly keen to engage in legal argument.
Many of my clients are vulnerable, through youth or mental health problems and I always try to make the process as stress free as possible. For example, I have made arrangements for clients who need to be interviewed by the police for those interviews to take place at a police station local to them, at a specialised suite for vulnerable interviewees or even at the client’s home address.
I have had extensive and regularly updated training in communicating with people who may need extra help in navigating the process; my chief aim would be for them to be diverted out of the criminal justice system altogether.
2019 - Successfully challenged a prosecution for causing harassment, alarm or distress to police officers at the Crown Court; the case was discontinued
2019 - Represented a client sectioned following her arrest for malicious communications; the police agreed with the victims to a community resolution
2018 - Successfully applied for the lifting of a Restraining Order following an admitted breach when it was no longer appropriate for the Order to remain in force
2018 - Represented a client facing trial for being concerned in the supply of class A and B drugs where a Criminal Behaviour Order was sought; he agreed to plead guilty to the cannabis only and received a Community Order and no Criminal Behaviour Order was made
2018 - Represented a client of good character accused of violent behaviour and possession of an offensive weapon after an amateur football match, where police had interviewed only the local team supporters; after service of the defence and challenging the prosecution the case was discontinued
2017 - Represented a client interviewed under caution accused of fly tipping in respect of his business premises; the allegation was misguided and no further action was taken
2017 - Represented a client of good character who had rejected the offer of a caution for an alleged assault after an amateur football match; he was acquitted after a trial and retained his good character
Assistant solicitor at Hartnells and Amphlett Lissimore Bagshaws LLP
Assistant solicitor managing offices in Camberwell and Deptford for Graham Dobson & Co
Training: Duthie Hart and Duthie, E15
College of Law, Lancaster Gate: Solicitors Final Examination
University of Exeter: LLB 2.1