Kieran was appointed Queen's Counsel in 2012 and has vast experience in dealing with criminal defence cases of the utmost seriousness and complexity both in this jurisdiction and in N Ireland. Over the years he has represented defendants in many of the country's highest profile and serious cases.
Kieran is recommended as one of the top New Silks in Crime in Chambers and Partners UK 2013, which says:
New silk Kieran Vaughan QC is "expected to go far" in his new role as "nothing fazes him" and he has a "fantastic way with both juries and clients." He defends in high-profile terrorist cases and matters of organised crime. Recently, he has handled the Omagh bombing appeal in Northern Ireland and R v Sabir Ali, a £120 million gold smuggling fraud.
Kieran is also recommended as one of the top new Silks in the Legal 500 UK 2013.
Kieran has vast experience defending in a wide spectrum of complex criminal cases, ranging from murder to terrorism and fraud.
Kieran has represented defendants in many serious organised crime cases involving murder, armed robbery, sex trafficking, money laundering, fraud and drugs importations.
R v Nicolas Successfully defended a defendant who was accused of being party to steal £1,000,000 worth of gold bullion in Belgium.
R v Russell The defendant was one of two twins charged with a double murder. The two victims were shot in the head with a shotgun in their flat. Following legal argument, the identification evidence was excluded. The prosecution appealed to the Court of Appeal failed and all four defendants were acquitted of all counts. Click here for press coverage.
R v Chapman In this case Kieran defended a man who worked in a scrap yard of stealing hundreds of tons of stolen rail track from Network Rail.
R v Mohammed The defendant was accused of killing his partner by stabbing her over 57 times.
R v Johnston The police stopped a van in Sunningdale and found a body in the back buried in a bag of sand. The man had been beaten to death with three lump hammers. For press coverage, click here.
R v Singh An international conspiracy to export over £2 million worth of high-value stolen vehicles out of the UK.
R v Ali Mr Ali who was accused of being party to an international conspiracy to import over £120,000,000 worth of gold from India into the UK evading the taxes which were payable. The trial judge acceded to a submission of no case to answer on the basis that as the gold entered the UK via Germany the UK authorities were not owed taxes on the importation of the goods into the UK.
R v Adams Represented a defendant in the case involving Terry Adams in relation to a number of allegations of money laundering in what has been described as one of the largest and most detailed cases in British history. It was alleged that Adams was the head of one of the most successful criminal families the country has ever known. For press coverage, click here.
R v Thomas This was a £40 million VAT fraud. The case was part Operation of Fajita which involved the Customs and Excise activities surrounding the London City Bond. Mr Thomas's conviction was overturned in the Court of Appeal on the basis of material non-disclosure of important evidence by Customs and Excise.
R v Goodwin The defendant was acquitted of murdering a male who was said to be the partner of a female who was having an affair with the defendant's accomplice. The accomplice was convicted.
R v Iqbal This case achieved significant media attention due to the fact that the defendants were alleged to have murdered two people in Blackburn by setting fire to the wrong house in the course of a so called "honour killing." For press coverage, click here.
R v Hikmet The defendant was acquitted of being involved in the importation of hundreds of grams of heroin. The main evidence against all defendants emanated from a "supergrass."
During his career Kieran has defended in some of the most serious terrorist cases in both England and Northern Ireland, including the following:
R v Hoey (Omagh Bombing) Kieran successfully defended Sean Hoey who was accused, amongst other offences, of 29 murders following the Omagh Bombing. For press coverage, click here.
R v Iqbal Leading junior defending in a case that achieved enormous national media attention due to the lurid details of the plot to kidnap and behead a British soldier. For press coverage, click here.
R v Naseer According to the prosecution opening, the planned bombing campaign would have been more devastating than 7/7. For press coverage, click here.
R v Khan Khan was one of the defendants who pleaded guilty to being involved in a plot to establish a terrorist training school in Pakistan. Some of his co-defendants pleaded guilty to conspiring to cause an explosion at the London Stock Exchange. For press coverage, click here.
R v BF BF was subject to a control order and was charged with numerous breaches.
R v Taj The defendant was accused of attempting to firebomb a publishing house. The publishing house in question had published a book called "The Jewel Of Medina," which was heavily criticised by sections of the Muslim community. For press coverage, click here.
R v Rahaman-Allan The defendant flew into Gatwick Airport with a hand grenade in his luggage causing a massive security alert.
R v Kearns In June 2010 Kieran represented Desmond Kearns. This case involved MI5 mounting a sting operation in Eastern Europe against the Real IRA who were attempting to procure an arsenal of weapons. This was the first criminal case in Northern Ireland in which MI5 gave evidence. Mr Kearns was acquitted following a successful abuse of process application on the grounds of entrapment. For press coverage, click here.
R v Crawley PIRA conspiracy to cause explosions. This case was tried in the Old Bailey. The prosecution's case was that the defendants intended to blow up the electricity power stations around the south east of England. Had the plan been successful it would have caused incalculable financial loss to the UK. For press coverage, click here.
R v Murphy PIRA conspiracy to cause explosions in London. The case was tried in the Old Bailey and achieved national media attention due to the fact that a significant amount of explosive material was recovered and one of the defendants was shot and killed in the course of the arrests. For press coverage, click here.
R v McGeough The defendant was accused of being a member of the PIRA and attempting to murder a soldier in 1981 by shooting him. For press coverage, click here.
R v O'Connor The defendant was acquitted of membership of the Real IRA and causing an explosion, which resulted in the destruction of a police station.
Breslin v McKevitt In addition to the above criminal matters Kieran defended Michael McKevitt in the Omagh civil action in Belfast High Court and Court of Appeal. Mr McKevitt was alleged to be the leader of the Real IRA. The main evidence against him came from an FBI/MI5 agent named David Rupert. The original trial lasted for 12 months and finished in June 2009. For press coverage, click here.
Further Notable Cases
R v Green Tommy Green shot an associate in his kitchen and buried him in his back garden were he was found some time later. R v O'Dell Jason O'Dell was acquitted of murder. The victim had been shot in the head in what the prosecution said was a business dispute over who controlled the doors in nightclubs around the country. R v Edwards Armed robbery of Post Office in Hastings. At the time it was the largest ever cash robbery totaling almost £8 million. R v Fillingham The case involved the importation of £90 million worth of cocaine from the Caribbean to the UK. At the time it was said to be the single ever largest seizure of cocaine in the UK. For press coverage, click here.
R v Demarku The case involved the trafficking of a large number of young women to the UK from Eastern Europe. The prosecution contended that once in the UK the women were forced to work in brothels set up by the defendants.
In addition to the above cases Kieran has defended individuals accused of other serious crime. What follows is but a selection of those cases: R v Crabtree, R v Knowles and R v Wordsworth Each case involved multiple allegations of armed robbery investigated by the Flying Squad.
R v McInerney The defendant was accused of two attempted murders, one of a policeman, and a large number of aggravated burglaries.
Kieran has also successfully defended other individuals accused of very serious matters such as murder, attempted murder, rape, riot (connected to the G20 protests), kidnap, false imprisonment, fraud and money laundering. Following on from the Omagh Bombing trial he developed a keen interest in all areas of forensic evidence and in particular LCN DNA
- Criminal Bar Association
- Critical Lawyers' Group
Profile updated January 2013
Year of Call
020 7993 7880
Kieran Vaughan QC is a member of the following Practice Areas:
- Courts Martial
- International Advice and Litigation