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Nerida Harford-Bell

  • Call: 1984
Nerida Harford-Bell
Legal 500 UK Awards 2015: Winner
"An amazing and charismatic advocate, respected by her opponents and judges."

Legal 500, 2019

Practice

Nerida has a wide-ranging criminal practice and is regularly instructed to lead in complex criminal cases. She has built up considerable expertise in cases involving:

  • Serious sexual offences including multiple and historic rapes and child abuse including multi-handed grooming cases.
  • Money laundering and Fraud including advance fee, banking immigration and internet fraud.
  • Confiscation.
  • Serious violence.
  • Representation of women who have killed their children whilst suffering from mental disorders.
  • Large scale importation/supply Drug cases.
  • Appellate work.
  • Inquests.

Represents clients across the social spectrum. She will represent all who come to her fearlessly and with immense skill, regardless of the crime with which they are charged.

Has undertaken training and has trained others in cross-examining Vulnerable Witnesses and is very experienced in cases where Intermediaries have been instructed both for prosecution witnesses and defendants. Nerida is highly skilled in cross-examining witnesses, many of whom are very young or vulnerable.

She sees it as important to establish an easy rapport with clients, particularly with younger, immature or inarticulate members of the public to enable them to have a voice. Has represented a large number of clients with mental health problems and where there have been issues as to fitness to plead/and or stand trial.

Highly experienced in dealing with expert witnesses.

Notable Cases

Currently instructed as leading counsel in an 11-handed child grooming case.

Fraud

R v P, CC: multi-handed sham marriage immigration fraud with associated money laundering counts. Represented the female organiser charged with Conspiracy to evade immigration controls by arranging sham marriages between Lithuanian brides and Pakistani males.

R v De Silva, Southwark CC: Secured acquittal of CCO accused of multi-handed £11.5 million money laundering conspiracy
R v Usuro, Guildford CC: advance fee fraud.

R v Paskaradas and others, CCC multi-handed money laundering, acquitted after lengthy abuse arguments re-trial preparation and police investigation failures.
R v Moses, Bristol Crown Court: Eight-handed conversion fraud, representing the main defendant
R v Kiala, Southwark Crown Court: banking fraud
R v Maharaj, Southwark CC: Million-pound post office fraud
R v Robinson, Kingston CC: 14-handed banking fraud
R v Zaidi, Kingston CC: Five-handed fraud concerning medicines and trademarks

Violence (including sexual violence) against the person

Nerida is regularly instructed in serious sexual offences including many historical allegations against very young children. Many of which date back decades, which has come to light in the wake of the Jimmy Saville enquiry.

R v Iqbal and others, Oxford Crown Court: Oxford Grooming Case. 11 defendants, 9 convicted. Represented the second defendant leading Michael Goold. Sentencing will take place in June. Widely reported in the media including BBC.

R v B: Attempted murder by a defendant with Asperger’s syndrome who was accused of stabbing a total stranger 24 times. Defendant acquitted of attempted murder.

R v Mohammed and Stakele – alleged rape of Norwegian tourist by two separate men both of whom were strangers to her and each other.  Successfully secured acquittal. Case was widely reported in the media.
R v [D] and 2 others – representing main defendant in very serious sex case, where husband, wife and friend are charged with multiple rapes and sexual assaults on various family members over a ten year period. The complainants were all vulnerable witnesses, with variously educational and or mental health problems.
R v Glenister: leading counsel in historic alleged rapes of young child, involving over 50 binders of disclosure. Successfully mounted abuse half-time submission.
R v B: rape by stepfather over a 5-year period.
R v Byfield: multiple rapes of sister by brother over a decade 30 years ago.
R v Sial: alleged “honour rapes of wife within marriage”.
R v L: alleged serial rapes of daughter over a number of years.
R v H (historic sex allegations 20 counts of rape and buggery of defendant’s sister between ages 7-13 and son aged 5-13 spanning 15-year time period)
R v Ikram (honour rape case across two jurisdictions – Pakistan and UK)
R v Ngola, Blackfriars CC (historic rape involving Congolese community, multi-complainant) R v Minchin, St Albans CC (historic rape and indecent assault across three generations of a family)

Murder/Homicide

R v Addison: successfully defended a female charged with two counts of Perverting Justice. She was the girlfriend of a male charged with a postcode gang murder.
R v [ an attempted murder by a defendant with Asperger’s syndrome (accused of stabbing a total stranger 24 times. Defendant acquitted of attempted murder)
R v Malachi Halstead and others, Hove Crown Court (conspiracy to murder. Represented, as sole advocate, a rap artist charged with four others with a “gangland contract shooting”. Defendant was successfully acquitted)
R v Dhillion & another (attempted murder of homeless alcoholic by group resulting in multiple slash and stab wounds to neck/throat/head severing main arteries. Represented 18-year-old vulnerable defendant in a cut-throat defence with mentally disordered co-defendant. Resulted in unanimous not guilty on all counts for defendant)
R v McCarvill, Maidstone CC (murder by mother of her child)
R v Begum, Central Criminal Court (manslaughter/child cruelty)
R v Latta, Winchester CC (baby shaking murder of baby)
R v John Barrett, Central Criminal Court (fatal stabbing of cyclist in park)
R v Rashid Alla, CCC (Gang stabbing)
R v Alan Hedgcock, Southwark CC (conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to rape in virtual reality)
R v Faisal Wangita, CCC (gang land mob stabbing)

Drug offences

R v Kochar and others: international importation/ drug supply class A.
R v Capone & others (leading junior, leading Alex Rose, in eight-handed Conspiracy to supply crack and heroin, class A drugs throughout England)
R v Malvern & another, St Albans CC (conspiracy to import Cocaine)
R v Marchelleck, Luton CC (conspiracy to supply large consignment of Cannabis)
R v Ryan, Kingston CC (firearms and drugs)
R v Asonye, Woolwich CC (conspiracy to import Cannabis and Cocaine)
R v Theodore, Kingston CC (conspiracy to manufacture class B drugs)

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