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Criminal Defence

"Impressed solicitors note that the individuals at the set represent an amazing level of excellence."

Chambers UK Bar Guide

"The barristers at this set are known for being socially conscious, fully committed to their cases and very imaginative in court."

Chambers UK Bar Guide

“The clerks are easy to get on with, reliable, extremely well organised and quick to respond to calls and e-mails. They work to a very high and professional standard."

Chambers UK Bar Guide

"Garden Court is a chambers of choice for complex, high-profile cases. The quality of advocacy and preparation provided by the barristers is exceptional, and the fine service provided by the clerks ensures smooth case management."

Chambers UK Bar Guide

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Top Ranked Chambers UK Bar 2021
Legal 500 Top Tier Set 2021
Winner Legal 500 Crime Set of the Year 2015
Shortlisted Legal 500 Crime Set of the Year 2018

Our criminal defence barristers have defended in – and won – many of the landmark cases that have defined modern criminal law.

The Garden Court Chambers Crime team regularly defend individuals charged with the most serious offences. We have a strong presence at the Central Criminal Court, where our barristers are instructed on a daily basis.

Areas of Expertise

  • Murder and violent crime
  • Sexual offences
  • Terrorism
  • Protest and public order
  • Baby-shaking
  • High-value frauds and confiscation
  • Criminal appeals

In 2015 our crime team won the Legal 500 Crime Set of the Year Award and we have since been shortlisted for the award a further two times. We are proud to have 18 Queen’s Counsel in our team, all of whom are recognised as leading individuals by the Chambers & Partners UK Bar Guide. We have the highest number of ranked silks at the Bar.

Multidisciplinary expertise within Chambers means that we are able to call on other specialists. A number of us also practise in the fields of judicial review (in particular, challenges to youth court practice and procedure), extradition, inquests into deaths in custody, actions against the police and public authorities and prison law.

We continue to actively lobby Government on policy proposals affecting the criminal Bar, in keeping with our ethos of defending access to justice.

Recent notable cases and news

Acquittal secured for man charged with murder, robbery, kidnap and GBH

Michael Ivers QC represented the main defendant leading Dominic Thomas at 25 Bedford Row instructed by Rose Nelson at O'Keefes Solicitors.

23 July 2021

Protestor acquitted of causing criminal damage on a joint enterprise basis at Brazilian Embassy

Audrey Cherryl Mogan of the Garden Court Protest Team represented the protestor instructed by Lydia Dagostino of Kellys Solicitors.

23 July 2021

Ali Naseem Bajwa QC represents young man acquitted of double murder at the Old Bailey

Ali Naseem Bajwa QC, a member of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team was instructed by Sinead Zaman of Powell Spencer Solicitors.

12 July 2021

Tessa Buchanan wins Legal Aid Barrister of the Year and Audrey Cherryl Mogan wins Legal Aid Newcomer of the Year at 2021 LALY Awards

Garden Court Chambers is delighted to announce that two of our barristers won awards at the annual Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards on 6 July 2021.

8 July 2021

Supreme Court upholds right to disruptive protest on highway

The Appellants were represented by Henry Blaxland QC and Owen Greenhall, both members of the Garden Court Chambers Protest Team, and Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh of Matrix Chambers. They were instructed by Raj Chada of Hodge, Jones and Allen solicitors.

25 June 2021

Undercover Policing Inquiry refers first suspected miscarriages of justice

Owen Greenhall represented three anti-apartheid movement campaigners whose cases were referred to the panel. Owen is led by Matthew Ryder QC of Matrix Chambers. They are instructed by Mike Schwarz of Hodge Jones & Allen.

23 June 2021

Lucie Wibberley speaks at The Scottish Criminal Law Channel's roundtable discussion on the pandemic's impact on the Courts

Lucie Wibberley, of the Garden Court Chambers Crime Team, spoke at The Scottish Criminal Law Channel's Virtual Roundtable Discussion entitled 'Have we done well with court business in Scotland during the pandemic?' that aired on Thursday 27 May 2021.

28 May 2021

Garden Court Crime Team responds to Law Commission Consultation on Intimate Image Abuse

The Garden Court Criminal Defence Team has responded to the Law Commission's Consultation on Intimate Image Abuse.

28 May 2021

Murder acquittal following fatal stabbing

Michael Ivers QC of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team represented the defendant. Michael led Rhiannon Crimmins of Furnival Chambers instructed by Rizvan Anwar of Arcadian Law.

27 May 2021

Stephen Lue, Tessa Buchanan and Audrey Cherryl Mogan shortlisted at the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards 2021

We are delighted to announce that Stephen Lue, Tessa Buchanan and Audrey Cheryl Mogan of Garden Court Chambers have been shortlisted at the Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards 2021.

18 May 2021

Rap and the State’s double whammy: Lack of expert challenge to racist stereotyping

Keir Monteith QC is a member of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team and Chair of the Garden Court webinars on prosecuting rap.

10 May 2021

Undercover Policing Inquiry - Witness statement read in full by James Scobie QC on behalf of "Mary"

James Scobie QC of Garden Court Chambers delivers witness statement at Tranche 1 (Phase 2) of the Undercover Policing Inquiry on behalf of “Mary” who was spied upon by Detective Constable Richard Clark.

4 May 2021

Appeals allowed for Extinction Rebellion Protests

Owen Greenhall and Audrey Cherryl Mogan, members of the Garden Court Chambers Protest Team, represented the appellants. They were instructed by Raj Chada (HJA) and Lydia Dagostino (Kellys).

4 May 2021

Undercover Policing Inquiry - Opening statement on behalf of other non-police, non-state Core Participants

Kirsten Heaven of the Garden Court Chambers Inquiries Team delivers opening statement at Tranche 1 Phase 2 of the Inquiry.

23 April 2021

Ali Bajwa QC and Christian Wasunna represent man acquitted of 2018 murder

Ali Bajwa QC and Christian Wasunna, members of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team, were instructed by Sinead Zaman of Powell Spencer Solicitors.

8 April 2021

David Emanuel QC obtains leave to appeal 18 years out of time in successful appeal against conviction and sentence

David Emanuel QC of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team represented the Defendant. David was instructed by Correna Platt of Stephensons Solicitors.

1 April 2021

Our Kate Aubrey-Johnson awarded Highly Commended Award in ECPAT UK's Children's Champion Awards

Congratulations to our Kate Aubrey-Johnson of the Garden Court Chambers Youth Justice & Child Rights Team who was awarded the Highly Commended Award at Every Child Protected Against Trafficking (ECPAT) UK's 'Children's Champion Awards'

23 March 2021

Defend our Freedom to Protest - Why the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill is Dangerous

Blog by our Jacob Bindman, Russell Fraser and Zehrah Hasan, members of the Garden Court Chambers Protest Law Team.

18 March 2021

Garden Court Chambers welcomes Zayd Ahmed to the Crime Team as third six pupil

We are delighted to announce that Zayd Ahmed has joined the Garden Court Chambers Crime Team as a third six pupil.

10 March 2021

Administrative Court overturn conviction for refusing to provide name and address in relation to suspected breach of Coronavirus Regulations

Tom Wainwright of the Garden Court Criminal Defence and Protest Teams represented Neale instructed by Patrick Ormerod of Bindmans Solicitors.

23 February 2021

Undercover Policing Inquiry - Garden Court counsel instructed

Garden Court Chambers counsel instructed to represent clients at the Undercover Policing Inquiry.

18 February 2021

Our Kate Aubrey-Johnson acts in case that clarifies the only route of appeal for victims of modern slavery

30 January 2021

Lord Chief Justice quashes Stansted 15 convictions

Owen Greenhall of the Garden Court Crime and Protest Rights Teams was instructed to represent the appellants.

29 January 2021

Kate Aubrey-Johnson and Joanne Cecil appointed by the Lord Chancellor to the Expert and Advisory Panel for the Independent Review of Criminal Legal Aid

29 January 2021

Extended sentence quashed in the Court of Appeal

Our Stella Harris of the Garden Court Criminal Defence Team acted for the appellant, instructed by Javed Chughtai, Partner at EBR Attridge.

26 January 2021

Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team call for urgent action to limit spread of Covid in the courts

19 January 2021

Government announces children will be exempt from the recent extension to custody time limits

Joanne Cecil of the Garden Court Chambers Youth Justice & Child Rights Team has worked tirelessly to achieve this fantastic result.

15 January 2021

Jury acquits defendant of manslaughter with verdict delivered in just over two hours

James Scobie QC of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team represented the defendant.

6 January 2021

Anya Lewis and Sam Robinson of the Garden Court Chambers Crime Team to be appointed Queen’s Counsel

Garden Court Chambers is delighted to announce that Anya Lewis and Sam Robinson of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team will be formally appointed Queen’s Counsel in 2021.

17 December 2020

High Court significant victory for victims of trafficking and modern slavery in DPP v M

Brenda Campbell QC and Sam Parham of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team have secured a significant victory for victims of trafficking and modern slavery in DPP v M in the Divisional Court.

15 December 2020

Court of Appeal upholds suspended sentence for animal rights activist

Michael Goold of the Garden Court Chambers Criminal Defence Team represented the defendant.

9 December 2020

Appeal against sentence allowed due to double counting and too high an uplift for aggravating factors

Shahida Begum of the Garden Court Criminal Defence Team was assigned by the Registrar to represent the applicant who had lodged his own grounds of appeal.

2 December 2020

All notable cases and news

The Team

Judy Khan QC

Year of Call: 1989

Year of Silk: 2010

Henry Blaxland QC

Year of Call: 1978

Year of Silk: 2002

Michael Turner QC

Year of Call: 1981

Year of Silk: 2002

Stephen Kamlish QC

Year of Call: 1979

Year of Silk: 2003

James Scobie QC

Year of Call: 1984

Year of Silk: 2010

Bernard Tetlow QC

Year of Call: 1984

Year of Silk: 2011

Ali Bajwa QC

Year of Call: 1993

Year of Silk: 2011

Rajiv Menon QC

Year of Call: 1993

Year of Silk: 2011

Peter Wilcock QC

Year of Call: 1988

Year of Silk: 2012

Clare Wade QC

Year of Call: 1990

Year of Silk: 2018

David Emanuel QC

Year of Call: 1996

Year of Silk: 2019

Keir Monteith QC

Year of Call: 1994

Year of Silk: 2019

Sam Robinson QC

Year of Call: 2002

Year of Silk: 2021

Marguerite Russell

Year of Call: 1972

Patrick Roche

Year of Call: 1977

Nerida Harford-Bell

Year of Call: 1984

Alex Taylor-Camara

Year of Call: 1989

Carol Hawley

Year of Call: 1990

Peter Rowlands

Year of Call: 1990

Mark Gatley

Year of Call: 1993

Edward Grieves

Year of Call: 1995

Minka Braun

Year of Call: 2000

Sam Parham

Year of Call: 2000

Christian Wasunna

Year of Call: 2000

Allison Bailey

Year of Call: 2001

Stella Harris

Year of Call: 2002

Alex Rose

Year of Call: 2003

Tom Wainwright

Year of Call: 2003

Joanne Cecil

Year of Call: 2005

Shahida Begum

Year of Call: 2008

James Mehigan

Year of Call: 2008

Thalia Maragh

Year of Call: 2009

Jacob Bindman

Year of Call: 2010

Emma Fenn

Year of Call: 2010

Russell Fraser

Year of Call: 2010

Michael Goold

Year of Call: 2010

Susan Wright

Year of Call: 2013

Franck Magennis

Year of Call: 2016

Associate Members

Mark George QC

Year of Call: 1976

Year of Silk: 2009

Mary McKeone

Year of Call: 1986

Pete Weatherby QC

Year of Call: 1992

Year of Silk: 2012

Kamran Choudhry

Year of Call: 2001

Sareta Ashraph

Year of Call: 2002

Anna Morris

Year of Call: 2006

Terry McGuinness

Year of Call: 2009

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