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Anya Lewis

  • Call: 1997
Anya Lewis
Legal 500 UK Awards 2015: Winner   
"Excellent on forensics issues, she has a lot of experience in child murder cases."

Legal 500, 2019

"Utterly reliable, compassionate and effective." "A keen barrister with a thoughtful intellect."

Legal 500


Anya is an experienced criminal defence practitioner whose practice encompasses the most serious offences prosecuted in the criminal courts. She has been recommended in Chambers and Partners for the last seven years and is ranked in Legal 500 for crime.

Her recent case load has included representing defendants in cases involving allegations of baby-shaking, murder, fraud (million pound access to work fraud), rape and other serious sexual violence (including historic allegations), importation of Class A drugs and perverting the course of justice.

Anya is a dedicated defence advocate who has a talent for spotting and arguing legal points and an ablity to grasp easily complex and detailed papers.

She undertakes cases on both a private and publicly funded basis.

She has particular experience in the following areas:

Baby-shaking cases

Anya has extensive experience in representing defendants in cases involving allegations of NAHI (non-accidental head injuries) and other offences related to child cruelty.  Cases of note include:-

R v S (Isleworth Crown Court) leading counsel in a case where the defendant was acquitted of shaking his daughter on his re-trial, after successfully appealing his conviction in the Court of Appeal;

R v TM  (Luton Crown Court) the defendant was acquitted of murdering her young son; her violent partner was convicted of his murder.  Anya undertook the medical cross-examination in the case which also involved issues connected to battered-wife syndrome and the calling of experts in that field;

R v S (Central Criminal Court) the defendant was charged with murdering his young son.  Anya undertook the cross-examination of the main expert medical witness;

R v Y  (Central Criminal Court) the defendant was charged with the manslaughter of his son when his son died 12 years after an alleged shake had left him severely disabled and with a shortened life expectancy; the case, which resulted in an acquittal, involved complex legal argument including abuse of process and medical evidence;

R v A (Central Criminal Court) a young woman was acquitted of shaking her baby son to death in the context of the child having severe Vitamin D deficiency.


Her fraud experience is significant including numerous large scale post-office and benefit frauds; mortage frauds and several large scale HMCE VAT and duty diversion frauds. Cases of note include:

R v N and others  (Southwark Crown Court) Anya secured the acquittal of a profoundly deaf defendant charged with a million pound access-to-work fraud;

R v R and others (Southwark Crown Court) Anya was counsel for the first defendant in Operation Tangelo, a £10 million excise diversion fraud, which collapsed as a result of failings in prosecution disclosure. VHCC case;

R v G and others (Harrow Crown Court) a million pound mortage fraud case which was stayed as the result of an abuse of process application mounted by Anya;

R v Z and others (Kingston Crown Court)  case dealing with offences under Medicines Act 1968 and Trade Descriptions Act 1968. VHCC case;

R v MM and others (Southwark Crown Court) million pound post-office fraud.

Sexual offences

Anya represents defendants charged with the full range of sexual offences including rape and child sex abuse including cases involving historic allegations. She has experience of dealing with indecent image cases and the forensic issues associated with those cases. She has experience of cross-examining vulnerable witnesses including cross-examination conducted through an intermediary. Some examples of cases include:-

R v C (Snaresbrook Crown Court) defendant charged with rape and other serious sexual offences against his young daughter;

R v M and others (Harrow Crown Court) defendant acquitted in multi-handed gang-rape trial;

R v K (Aylesbury Crown Court) defendant acquitted of numerous allegations of rape in the context of an arranged marriage;

R v H (Manchester Crown Court) defendant tried in relation to allegations of violent stranger rape;

R v P (Cardiff Crown Court) defendant acquitted of the majority of counts of historic child sex abuse on three step-granddaughters.

Murder, serious violence and firearms

Anya regularly represents those charged with serious violence against the person including murder, attempted murder and GBH. She is experienced in representing defendants in multi-handed cases particularly in the context of robberies including armed robberies and other firearem offences. Notable cases in this area include:-

R v S and others (Kingston Crown Court) multi-handed attempted murder trial where Anya appeared as junior alone which resulted in acquittal of all 3 defendants;

R v P and others (Nottingham Crown Court) multi-handed murder case in relation to a fire-bombing in Leicester;

R v BH  (Birmingham Crown Court) multi-handed possession of firearms with intent trial;

R v L-M (Nottingham Crown Court)  the defendant was acquitted of murder at half time in a case involving a gang-shooting;

R v B and others (Croydon Crown Court) the defendant was acquitted at half time in a case involving allegations of kidnapping and false imprisonment.


R v S (Central Criminal Court) represented a young man charged with travelling to fight in Syria.


Anya regularly represents those accused with offences connected to Class A drugs (and others) including importation and possession with intent to supply. Notable cases include:-

R v L (Inner London Crown Court) defendant acquitted of importing 1/2 kilo of cocaine;

R v S (Kingston Crown Court) a multi-handed conspiracy to import 87 kilos of heroin. A SOCA prosecution where the defendant was also indicted on separate counts of running a cocaine pressing factory. The defendant was acquitted on all counts;

R v O (Southwark Crown Court) represented first defendant in multi-handed milllion pound class-A drug importation case;

R v M (Inner London Crown Court) multi-handed large scale Class A drug importation;

R v S (Cardiff Crown Court) large scale drug importation. VHCC case.

Perverting the course of justice

In recent years Anya has represented a number of defendants charged with perverting the course of justice. Of note:-

R v A and others (Leicester Crown Court) he defendant was jointly charged on a murder indictment in relation to an allegation of assisting an offender in relation to the shooting of a young woman in a gang related case; he was acquitted;

R v M (Central Criminal Court) Anya secured the acquittal of a vulnerable defendant who was charged with trying to hide the weapon her husband had just used to stab his best friend to death in a drunken incident;

Public protest

Anya has always enjoyed representing those involved in offences connected to public protest and the challenge of the legal issues which often accompany such cases. She was involved in representing a number of defendants involved in campaigning against the introduction of GM crops (in both the Magistrates Courts and the Crown Courts). She has also represented those involved in campaigning against the Iraq war, animal cruelty, arms fairs and climate change. She has most recently successfully represented those involved in the student protests. Notable cases include:-

R v K Nottingham Crown Court (she represented one of 6 climate change activists in second Ratcliffe on Soar trial which collapsed as a result of arguments on abuse of process and disclosure relating to an undercover police officer);

Tilly v DPP [2001] EWCA Admin 821 (definition of aggravated trespass).


Other relevant experience includes being involved for several years with a defendant accused of importing rare parrots into the UK in breach of CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species). See:-

R v Sissens [2000] CA EWCA Crim 67 (Effect of EC Directives).


Contributing author Blackstones Guide of the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008.