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HOMICIDE & SERIOUS VIOLENCE

R v C – Central Criminal Court – April 2018
JSP Law represented C who was one of 4 defendants accused of the murder of a man said to have been robbing the runners working for a gang who were supplying drugs in Romford. The deceased was stabbed 10 times to the chest and abdomen, 2 of the wounds being fatal. C was identified by witnesses as being part of the group that attacked the deceased and the prosecution relied upon telephone evidence to try to prove his involvement. He chose not to give evidence in his own defence when the trial took place and he was acquitted by the jury. Martin Hicks QC of 2 Hare Court and Yasin Patel of Church Court Chambers were instructed by Vinesh Patel, the solicitor with conduct.

R v F – Luton Crown Court – June & July 2017
Multi-handed allegation of Conspiracy to Commit GBH and various firearms offences. The case involved two distinct “gangs”, who over the course of an evening in July 2016 began attacking the vehicles and homes of one another. The matter escalated from damage to cars to the discharge of automatic weapons at residential addresses, during which a member of the public was hit by a ricochet bullet. The police presented the case as two separate drugs gangs engaging in a turf war. Counsel instructed were Timothy Kendall leading Thomas Daniel, both at 2 Bedford Row. James Bailey-Woodward was the solicitor with conduct.

R v G – St. Albans Crown Court – June 2017
G was jointly charged, along with two others, with murder. The deceased was a drug user and had purchased drugs from G and one of his co-defendants previously. Both G and his co-defendant accepted that they were drug dealers and the murder occurred when the deceased complained about the quality of drugs he had been supplied with. A confrontation took place, during which the deceased was stabbed.

Both G and his co-defendant were blamed each other for the murder. After considering the evidence the jury convicted the co-defendant of murder and convicted G of manslaughter. The co-defendant received a sentence of life imprisonment with a recommendation of serving 30 years. G received a sentence of 9 years for manslaughter. Ian Henderson QC of Farringdon Chambers led Andel Singh, Solicitor Advocate JSP Law

R v E – Luton Crown Court – March 2017
JSP Law represented E who was jointly charged with manslaughter and also the possession and importation of unlicensed drugs. The two defendants had set up a clinic in Luton in order to assist people with substance dependencies and to assist them in curing addictions, they had imported a drug from the United States of America which was unlicensed in the UK.

The deceased, responded to the advertisements put out on social media by the two defendants and arranged to attend the clinic in Luton so that the treatment could take place. The unlicensed drug was taken by the deceased who unfortunately died whilst being monitored at the clinic.

It was established through pathology and a toxicologist that in fact the deceased had taken heroin during the 36 hours that he was at the clinic, which was contrary to the instructions given to him once he had administered the unlicensed drug. An expert who has dealt with addiction treatment using the unlicensed drug gave evidence from California over a Livelink. Having heard from two pathologists, two toxicologists and various other experts a submission was made at the close of the Crown’s case that there was no case to answer so far as the manslaughter allegation was concerned.

The prosecution chose not to appeal that terminatory ruling. The defendants pleaded guilty to various matters of possession of unlicensed and uncontrolled drugs and E received a short sentence of imprisonment. Andrew Jeffries QC led Andel Singh, Solicitor Advocate JSP Law

R v C – Cambridge Crown Court – June 2016
JSP Law represented C who was charged with murder in St Albans. C was said to have stabbed the deceased following an initial argument between a group containing C and a group containing the deceased outside of a flat where C and his friends were located. After the initial argument the group containing the deceased returned to the scene and C went outside having armed himself with a knife. He was confronted by the deceased and an argument ensued between the two of them, resulting in C inflicting one stab wound to the deceased.

C and the rest of his group were arrested but all were released on bail pending further enquiries. C eventually handed himself in after his partner’s mother overheard him confess to her that he had inflicted the fatal wound. At trial he maintained that he was acting in self-defence but this was rejected by the jury who convicted by a majority decision. Ian Henderson QC of Farringdon Chambers led Andel Singh, Solicitor Advocate JSP Law

FIREARMS

R v F – Luton Crown Court – June & July 2017
Multi-handed allegation of Conspiracy to Commit GBH and various firearms offences. The case involved two distinct “gangs”, who over the course of an evening in July 2016 began attacking the vehicles and homes of one another. The matter escalated from damage to cars to the discharge of automatic weapons at residential addresses, during which a member of the public was hit by a ricochet bullet. The police presented the case as two separate drugs gangs engaging in a turf war. Counsel instructed were Timothy Kendall leading Thomas Daniel, both at 2 Bedford Row. James Bailey-Woodward was the solicitor with conduct.

R v M – Harrow Crown Court – July 2016
This lengthy trial involved 9 defendants, all of whom were involved in the purchase of legitimate starting pistols, converting them into firing pistols, making ammunition and then selling the illegal firearms to drug dealers in an area of North West London.

There was a large undercover operation by the police in tracking these individuals down and prosecuting them. Surveillance by undercover officers using recording equipment. The lead case as far as punishment is concerned in respect of these offences suggests that the starting point should be in the region of 17-20 years, but with good mitigation M received a sentence of 8 years imprisonment. Trial counsel was Andel Singh, Solicitor Advocate at JSP Law

R v R – Snaresbrook Crown Court – April 2016
R had been the victim of a shooting outside his home address in November 2015. He had been shot twice with a sawn-off shotgun at around 5:00am as he left his home to go to work. His house had been sealed off as a crime scene and whilst he was in hospital having treatment for his life threatening injuries, the Police had found a pistol and live ammunition in his spare bedroom. R was charged and accepted his guilt in relation to the pistol and live ammunition found within his house. Expert evidence was obtained and the Court was persuaded that in all the circumstances, there were exceptional reasons not to impose the minimum 5 year term of imprisonment. A term of 2 years 6 months was instead imposed. Craig Rush of 2 Bedford Row was instructed as counsel, Matthew Bliss was the solicitor with conduct.

DRUGS

R v O & Others – Kingston Crown Court – January – April 2019
JSP Law represented ‘O’ who was charged with conspiring to supply over 1 tonne of cocaine.‘O’ had been arrested in July 2017 after the Police stopped a car containing over 80 kilos of cocaine and found a note leading them to search O’s home address. There they found 1 ½ kilos of cocaine in a wardrobe.nThe first trial was abandoned amid allegations of the Police deliberately tampering with a Sat Nav device. Following a 13 week re-trial the jury returned a unanimous not guilty verdict. Counsel instructed by Matthew Bliss (solicitor with conduct) were Mark Milliken-Smith and Jonas Milner of 2 Bedford Row.

R v O & Others – Kingston Crown Court – January – April 2019
JSP Law represented ‘O’ who was charged with conspiring to supply over 1 tonne of cocaine.  ‘O’ had been arrested in July 2017 after the Police stopped a car containing over 80 kilos of cocaine and found a note leading them to search O’s home address.  There they found 1 ½ kilos of cocaine in a wardrobe.  The first trial was abandoned amid allegations of the Police deliberately tampering with a Sat Nav device.  Following a 13 week re-trial the jury returned a unanimous not guilty verdict.  Counsel instructed by Matthew Bliss (solicitor with conduct) were Mark Milliken-Smith and Jonas Milner of 2 Bedford Row.

R v I & Others – Woolwich Crown Court – July – August 2018
JSP Law represented ‘I’ who was accused of using a private jet to smuggle ½ a tonne of cocaine into the UK from Columbia. The drugs had an estimated street value of £41m and border force officers said it was one of the largest hauls they had ever dealt with. Shelley Griffith of Farringdon Chambers was instructed and Joanna Barun was the solicitor with conduct. The case attracted national press attention.

R v L & Others – Basildon Crown Court – April & May 2017 – Operation Sunset
JSP Law were instructed to represent the lead defendant who was charged with conspiracy to supply large quantities of Class A drugs between Essex and Hampshire. The Police investigation involved 7 months of undercover surveillance and extensive telephone & financial evidence. At the conclusion of the trial which lasted over 4 weeks ‘L’ was acquitted by the jury. Counsel instructed was Alex Jamieson at 25 Bedford Row, Matthew Bliss was the solicitor with conduct.

R v B & Others – Manchester Crown Court – January & February 2017 – Operation Classman
JSP Law represented ‘B’ who was charged with conspiring to import class A drugs through Dover on behalf of an organised crime group in Merseyside. ‘B’ was said to be responsible for arranging the transportation of the drugs from Spain to the UK (via Holland & Belgium) and for their onward transportation to the North-West of England. The case involved specially adapted vehicles to conceal the drugs and complex legal argument on the admissibility of evidence obtained from Belgium as to the movements of some of the defendants and the seizure of drugs in Belgium. The complexity of those argument led to the International Justice & Organised Crime Division of the CPS instructing Andrew Thomas QC to prosecute the case. The case involved nearly 10,000 pages of evidence. The trial lasted over 5 weeks and David Wood of Charter Chambers was instructed counsel, Matthew Bliss was the solicitor with conduct.

R v B & Others – Chelmsford Crown Court – October 2016 – Operation Tutor
JSP Law were instructed by father and son, ‘B’ & ‘B Jnr’, who were prosecuted for conspiring to supply class B drugs in Essex & Kent. The allegation centred around ‘B’ using the prison telephone system to direct his son and others to supply vast quantities of cannabis resin. The evidence included covert observations of ‘B Jnr’ and transcripts of telephone calls made from HMP Dovegate where B was already serving a significant sentence for supplying 202 kilos of amphetamine. Counsel for ‘B’ and ‘B Jnr’ were Craig Rush and Charles Langley of 2 Bedford Row. Matthew Bliss was the solicitor with conduct.

R v A & Others – Southampton Crown Court – February 2016
A was one of a number of defendants accused of Being Concerned In The Supply Of Cannabis. A number of houses in the Southampton area had been set up as cannabis factories. The police investigation began when a fire took place at one of the addresses and whilst officers were present at that location, the defendant attended and gave a handwritten note to the police admitting that she was responsible for the production of cannabis at that address. The police subsequently uncovered a large scale operation at further properties and several defendants were charged. A was unanimously acquitted after trial, her defence being that she was forced to write the letter and was acting under the order of those directing the operation. Counsel instructed was David Wood at Charter Chambers, James Bailey-Woodward was the solicitor with conduct.

R v O & Others – Central Criminal Court – December 2015 – Operation Traipse
JSP Law were instructed to represent O who was charged with conspiracy to import cocaine. The case involved an undercover operation by the National Crime Agency and involved an undercover officer negotiating the arrangements to transport the drugs from Spain into the UK. O was arrested when he was seen to be carrying the box containing 20 kilos of cocaine into his home address in Essex. O was unanimously acquitted by the jury at the conclusion of his trial. Counsel instructed was Charles Langley at 2 Bedford Row.

FRAUD

R v W & Others – St. Albans Crown Court – November 2018 – Operation Klister
JSP Law were instructed to represent W in relation to a ‘cash for crash’ fraud whereby car accidents were either induced or staged. The case involved 2 trials of 18 defendants following a 2 year investigation by the City of London Police. The loss to the insurance companies was estimated at around £1.2m. Jason Cross of Charter Chambers was instructed by Matthew Bliss, solicitor with conduct

R v A & Others – Chelmsford CC – July 2018
A was alleged to have laundered the proceeds of a fraudulent internet ticket selling operation. The site was said to have been professionally set up and individuals contacted various people in order to purchase tickets for sporting events, including the Rugby World Cup, from that site.

Individuals paid their money to a bank account but invariably they did not receive any tickets. The enterprise was said to have made a profit of just over £250,000.

Joanna Barun was the solicitor with conduct and Colin Witcher of Church Court Chambers represented A at her sentence hearing where she received a suspended sentence.

R v P – Leicester Crown Court – July 2017 – Operation Tarlac
JSP Law were instructed to represent P who was charged with multiple offences of defrauding NHS Trusts in England & Wales. In total £12m was diverted from NHS Trusts, Local Authorities, the States of Guernsey and Educational establishments. Daniel Murray of 25 Bedford Row was instructed by Vinesh Patel, the solicitor with conduct.

R v M & Another – Southwark Crown Court – October & November 2016 – Operation Villalot
JSP Law represented ‘M’ at her re-trial on charges of mortgage fraud and money laundering. ‘M’ had previously stood trial on the same charges in 2015 when the jury had failed to reach a verdict on the main charges but had acquitted ‘M’ of several other charges. ‘M’ was finally acquitted of all remaining charges after a re-trial lasting 6 weeks. Matthew Bliss was the instructed solicitor and counsel instructed were Martin McCarthy leading Greg Krieger, both from Farringdon Chambers.

R v M & Others – Southwark Crown Court – January – March 2015 – Operation Villalot
This was one of a series of trials at Southwark Crown Court involving allegations of mortgage fraud and money laundering. This trial lasted nearly 8 weeks and involved complex legal argument on the admissibility of evidence said to have been obtained using a website selling false identification documents and the admissibility of the use of those documents to obtain property in Cyprus. Neither ‘Mr or Mrs M’ gave evidence and both were unanimously acquitted by the jury. Craig Rush and Chris Saad of 2 Bedford Row were counsel instructed on behalf of ‘Mr M’, Charles Langley of 2 Bedford Row was counsel instructed on behalf of ‘Mrs M’. Matthew Bliss was the solicitor with conduct.

TERRORISM

R v S – Woolwich Crown Court – June 2018
JSP Law represented S who was accused of stock-piling various chemicals, firearms and their component parts in readiness for a right-wing terrorist attack, said to be in revenge to the Westminster and London Bridge atrocities. He was also said to be in possession of literature likely to be useful to someone planning an act of terrorism. S denied that his motive for being in possession of the items, extremist material and literature was for terrorist purposes but was convicted after a trial which involved several chemical and firearms experts giving technical evidence on the potential of the items in his possession. Andel Singh (Solicitor Advocate) was instructed by Matthew Bliss (Solicitor), both of JSP Law.

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