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Crime and Regulatory Law


Matrix offers an unrivalled combination of specialist skills and experience in national and international crime and regulatory law.

Managed by a “efficient and well run” “outstanding” practice team, Matrix’ crime and regulatory team is “..very much-admired…” and “…particularly celebrated for handling cases where criminal law and human rights issues intersect. However, it attracts a much broader spread of criminal work than that and appears in many important cases both at home and abroad, a number of which bring up novel points of law…” (Chambers and Partners, 2014)

The team’s work encompasses

  • Terrorism
  • International criminal law
  • Corporate crime
  • Official secrets
  • Serious crime
  • Miscarriages of justice
  • Death-row litigation
  • Asset forfeiture and confiscation
  • Human rights litigation

The legal directories praise the team in 2014 as being “…known for the excellence of its practitioners, who have market-leading reputations in the fields of white-collar crime and corporate investigations. Members here are consistently instructed in some of the most complex and significant cases, and are viewed as embodying all-round quality from top to bottom…A set with broad expertise, Matrix is seen by sources as being right at the cutting edge of the law. A progressive and commercially minded set, it has cultivated an enviable reputation for POCA work…they’re fantastic, and offer a deluxe service…” (Chambers & Partners 2014).

“fantastically authoritative” Former DPP, Lord Ken Macdonald QC is:

“…a popular choice to advise corporate clients and prominent individuals on complex white-collar issues…sought after to advise prosecuting authorities…an all-round fraud silk…very good in conference with corporate clients…fantastically authoritative and oozes confidence” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“genuine star” Clare Montgomery QC is:

“…unanimously admired…sharp analysis and clear mind…particularly highly sought after for appellate matters…one of the best criminal silks…very clever and pleasant to work with…highly regarded by judges…a genuine star of the Bar…handles complex extradition matters as part of her hugely impressive practice…known for the superb analysis she brings to a case…very hard-working, super bright and an excellent advocate…universally hailed as a leading silk…equally adept at appearing in major investigations, jury trials and appellate courts…her thought process is fantastic and her knowledge is unbelievable…fierce in protecting her clients’ interests…noted for her expertise in cases concerning the criminal justice system…a very good and bright advocate…a fierce academic element to her approach…hugely well regarded in public law…an extremely prominent human rights lawyer, who is extremely impressive…highly recommended for advising on civil fraud cases with criminal aspects…outstanding cross-examination ability…extremely clever and very pleasant to work with…highly regarded by judges at all levels…well known for handling complex cases in regulatory, fraud and criminal law…highly respected for the breadth of her skill…she can take the most complex points and make them into a common-sense argument. That gives her real gravitas in front of judges…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…a hugely bright and fierce lawyer, praised for the clarity of her advice…who has an enormous breadth of legal knowledge, and is hard to equal in this area…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“incredibly able and highly intelligent” Tim Owen QC:

Is a “…pre-eminent defence expert for criminal asset recovery and confiscation law…out on his own in terms of ability for confiscation cases…when he gets up to speak, he knows more about confiscation than any judge…a fine reputation for his human rights practice… impressive… makes attractive, concise submissions that hit all the right points…offers a nice combination of rigour and humility…an effective, attractive advocate…intellectual sharpness…incredibly able and highly intelligent…as an advocate he’s supremely elegant…his fraud practice is enhanced by his asset recovery expertise…a super appellate advocate…regularly acts on high-profile judicial review cases…displays prowess in the most complex and cutting-edge police work…skilled at narrowing down issues and tactical decision-making…has the ear of the court…can make significant and weighty points in an understated way…demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning terrorism and national security…an extremely elegant advocate… always has a wonderful sense of what the court will accept…relentless and brave…has excellent judgement…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…approachable, extremely bright, and tactically spot on…an outstanding analyst…highly regarded in the field…one of the best appellate advocates of his generation…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“phenomenal” U.N. Special Rapporteur on Counter Terrorism and Human Rights Ben Emmerson QC is:

“…an undisputed leader at the Bar, who has a multidisciplinary practice that encompasses high-profile and complex criminal work…maintains a phenomenal reputation for his handling of a variety of complex and significant human rights matters…demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning international law, criminal law, protests, terrorism and the conduct of the military…one of the top human rights silks, both by reputation and by example…undoubtedly excellent and just so experienced…just has that aura about him…can judge what the court is thinking and what it needs to hear…an outstanding reputation for his handling of public law matters involving human rights…demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning protests and unlawful detention…at the top of his game…one of the most powerful advocates I have ever heard in court…a fearsome advocate, who gives everything to his cases…draws on his enormous expertise in public law and human rights to act in a range of inquests and public inquiries…fearless…dogged, determined and very used to the public stage, and has conducted advocacy all over the world and at the highest level… highly motivated and very committed individual who is regarded as having a first-class intellect…considered one of the top international crime silks…a consummate advocate…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…highly regarded in the field…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“excellent” Phillippa Kaufmann QC is:

“…an outstanding reputation for handling some of the most innovative judicial reviews in public law… demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning civil liberties and human rights…ferociously bright…one of those barristers who is really committed to her practice area…mellifluous, considered and courageous…absolutely at the top of her game…an outstanding reputation for handling cases involving deaths in custody, prisoners’ rights, mental health and miscarriages of justice…a recognised authority on international human rights…phenomenally clever…brings incisive analysis to every case she considers…great at the law, great as an advocate, and great with clients…leader in the field…fantastically articulate, extremely charismatic and good at carrying the court with her…amazing on her feet…super-bright…picks out overlooked points…excellent judgement and can approach a case like a judge…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“highly effective” Matthew Ryder QC:

Is “…greatly valued for his strategic approach…defends in serious criminal cases with very complex points attached to them…very switched-on…very hard-working…very professional…a good choice for complicated cases and on anything involving the media….advises on some of the most high-profile claims against the police…highly effective handling criminal appeals and cases relating to deaths at the hands of the State…fantastic at reading the court…devastating in cross-examination…deals with witnesses very well…extremely measured in how he delivers his argument…an incredibly charming and effective operator…extremely hard-working…very thorough…does a huge amount of preparation…hugely respected figure…fiercely bright…has integrity and moral drive…doesn’t always take the lucrative cases, but is instead more interested in those that matter to him…a brilliant advocate who is very intuitive…his instincts are generally right…hugely impressive…very client-friendly…gets to the nub of an issue quickly and is able to navigate his way through very difficult areas and find a solution which at first blush would not seem achievable…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…intelligent and savvy…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“Impressive” Julian B. Knowles QC:

Is “…very highly respected amongst peers and clients alike…stands out for his wide-ranging practice…very strong academically…very strong on the law… extremely experienced… deals with complex and high-profile extradition cases…diligent, hard-working and bright…an impressive reputation at the Criminal Bar… receives praise for his legal analysis and his command of facts…extremely able and intelligent…good at cases with unusual legal issues…gives clear advice to professional and lay clients on complex law…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“incredibly bright” Alex Bailin QC:

“…is very authoritative and totally on top of his brief…a very easy person to work with, as he’s very personable, and very committed… demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning the victims of rendition and torture… incredibly bright and very efficient…it is frightening how quickly he can respond to a point…an extremely good lawyer, who is very diligent, and leaves no avenue unexplored…has the flair you need if you want to get the ear of the court… called upon to advise on major fraud, bribery and cartel investigations…praised for his oral advocacy and strategic foresight…a great team player…handles the dynamics within a team really well and gets the best contribution out of everyone…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…displays strong analytical skills, and is ‘innovative in the way he approaches procedural tools…noted for his eye for detail…recommended for his rapid analytical skills…at combining in-depth technical knowledge with wholly practical outcomes…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“quite extraordinary” Danny Friedman QC:

“…demonstrates particular expertise in cases concerning terrorism and national security…gutsy, conscientious, confident and impressive…a thorn in the side of the government for many years to come…a passionate advocate…recognised for his expertise in handling terrorism cases all the way up to the appeal courts…an enormous capacity for researching and presenting legal submissions, and has a compendious knowledge of human rights issues and cases worldwide…quite extraordinary… commands considerable admiration for the representation he offers to bereaved families in inquests of the highest importance…superb…deeply committed to the cause and his clients…charming and persuasive as an advocate…irrepressible…full of energy and commitment…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…amazing with clients and dedicated to his work…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“brilliant” Hugh Southey QC is:

“highly praised…a brilliant silk to work with… fantastic at police law judicial review…an outstanding analyst who is fast at turning work around…extremely reliable and great on his feet…very approachable, hands-on and stays involved during the life of the case…has a strong strategic approach to litigation and drafts extremely well…an extremely bright silk…great…really quick and gets through an enormous amount of work…very sharp, always on top of his brief and very responsive…a very broad range of expertise…delightful…persuasive, elegant in his submissions and focused…an expert in civil liberties and human rights” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“incisive” Andrew Bodnar is:

“…a much-praised junior, whose fraud practice is complemented by his celebrated POCA expertise…extremely bright…has specialist knowledge and experience of dealing with POCA work arising from fraud cases…a respected POCA defence lawyer…extremely experienced…his advice is incisive, accurate and commercial…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

He has “…an unparalleled knowledge of asset recovery law…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“highly recommended” Mark Summers QC:

Is “…one of the most highly recommend juniors at the Criminal Bar…has a flourishing practice that covers terrorism and appellate work…great on technical legal points…able to get around complex legal issues incredibly quickly…an encyclopaedia on extradition law…what he doesn’t know isn’t worth knowing…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“just brilliant” Alison Macdonald is:

“…extremely well regarded…draws on her daunting knowledge of criminal law and international law…excels in all areas of her expertise…incredible experience…just brilliant…a fantastic advocate…extensive experience of public law challenges in the civil liberties and criminal justice context…her advocacy style is fantastic…can lead judges gently through the evidence in a very well-balanced way…incredibly organised, super-bright and great with clients…fairly formidable, not easily rattled and won’t back down… formidable and very clever, but also extremely relaxed and modest about it….will go a long way…knows her way around things and has a very practical, commercial brain…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…simply brilliant…” (Legal 500, 2013)

“fearless” Helen Law is:

“…has established a civil liberties practice that is characterised by a concern with criminal justice…fearless on her feet…has excellent judgement…highly praised by clients…one of the best juniors for police actions…her written work is excellent…very strong in cross-examination and is excellent on her feet in front of a judge…goes from strength to strength…very few barristers have sufficient criminal and civil litigation background to cross-examine police officers as well as her…” (Chambers & Partners 2014)

“…a fantastic trial advocate…” (Legal 500, 2013)

Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh

“…cares passionately about the cases she works on…” (Legal 500, 2013)

In 2013 and 2014, the directories continue to fete the team’s work in:


  • Ken Macdonald QC and Andrew Bodnar successfully defended football club chairman Milan Mandaric against charges of cheating the Revenue
  • Ken Macdonald QC, Ben Emmerson QC, Alex Bailin QC and Alison Macdonald are acting for Tchenguiz on the civil claim arising out of the arrest by the City of London Police in connection with the investigation into the Icelandic financial collapse
  • Clare Montgomery QC was instructed to advise aluminium magnate Victor Dahdaleh on allegations of corruption
  • Tim Owen QC represented the former operations director of iSOFT in relation to market abuse charges brought by the former FSA
  • Matthew Ryder QC acted in the high-profile FSA insider dealing case in connection with information emanating from Deloittes on acquisitions by Microsoft and others
  • Alex Bailin QC was instructed to represent Alstom’s UK president and finance director in relation to the SFO’s investigation into allegations of corruption at the company

Serious Crime

  • Clare Montgomery QC acted on behalf of Andrew Coulson, former editor of the News of the World, during the course of criminal proceedings arising out of the phone hacking scandal; Joanna Buckley continues to represent Andrew Coulson
  • Tim Owen QC acted in Christopher Jefferies v Chief Constable of Avon and Somerset, a landlord and former teacher, following his arrest in January 2011 for the murder of Joanna Yeates
  • Julian Knowles QC defended Vicky Pryce, former wife of Liberal Democrat MP Chris Huhne, in a high-profile trial raising issues of marital coercion
  • Danny Friedman QC acted in R v Mohamed Hasseen, acting for a defendant who assisted others to acquire firearms to defend a mosque in Dewsbury

Asset forfeiture & POCA

  • Clare Montgomery QC acted for the claimant in Wiese v The UK Border Agency [2012] ACD 92, challenging the confiscation of a large amount of cash in a London airport
  • Tim Owen QC is acting for the appellant in R v Briggs-Price [2009] 1 AC 1026, a case pending in Strasbourg concerning a confiscation order made in circumstances where the Crown had accepted that no benefit was derived from the index offence
  • Andrew Bodnar recently acted for Stanford International Bank in a case concerning an asset-freezing order Strasbourg and international criminal courts
  • Ben Emmerson QC and Alex Bailin QC appeared before the ECHR in Austin v UK (2012) 55 EHRR 14, concerning the legality of the method of crowd containment employed by the police during public demonstrations
  • Ben Emmerson QC is advising with regards to the Libya situation before the International Criminal Court concerning the trials of Gaddafi and Al-Senussi

Human Rights test cases

  • Clare Montgomery QC acted in R (Gujra) [2013] 1 AC 484, SC, concerning the entitlement of the CPS to apply a test used for conducting public prosecutions when considering the discontinuation of a private prosecution on grounds of insufficient evidence
  • Clare Montgomery QC acted in a case concerning the Home Secretary’s decision to exclude dissident Iranian politician Maryam Rajavi from the UK
  • Tim Owen QC appeared in R v L [2013] 2 Cr App R 23, a complex case raising issues of the prosecution of youths for cultivation of cannabis in connection with recent human trafficking legislation
  • Tim Owen QC acted in R (Hindawi) v Parole Board [2013] ACD 58, a judicial review of the Parole Board’s decision to refuse to grant a convicted terrorist release on licence
  • Ben Emmerson QC acted for the DPP for Northern Ireland in an inquiry concerning the Public Prosecution Service’s failure to secure convictions for a group of loyalists responsible for the murder of Robert Hamill
  • Phillippa Kaufmann QC, Alex Bailin QC and Mark Summers act in Hicks v Commissioner of Police [2012] ACD 102, a judicial review of the Metropolitan Police’s handling of protests against the royal wedding
  • Phillippa Kaufmann QC acted for three Kenyan nationals who claimed to have been rendered to Uganda and subsequently charged with a number of murders arising from the Kampala World Cup bombings of 2010
  • Phillippa Kaufmann QC and Helen Law represented three female claimants under the Human Rights Act in J v Commissioner of Police [2013] 1 WLR 2734, high-profile litigation which concerned the infiltration of an environmental campaigning organisation by an undercover officer
  • Danny Friedman QC acted in CC & CF v SSHD [2013] 1 WLR 2171, concerning a suspect who was detained unlawfully in Somaliland, where he alleged that he was mistreated by UK personnel
  • Danny Friedman QC acted successfully for Abu Qatada in a case concerning his proposed expulsion from the UK (Othman v United Kingdom (2012) 55 EHRR 1).
  • Hugh Southey QC advised the appellate in ZZ (France) v SSHD [2013] 3 WLR 813, arguing that SIAC proceedings had breached EU law
  • Hugh Southey QC provided counsel in X v SSHD [2013] 1 WLR 2368, a successful challenge to the child sex offender disclosure scheme arguing that the failure of police to ensure that they consulted offenders was unlawful
  • Alison Macdonald acted for the interveners in a case concerning the powers of the police to stop and search, and the disproportionate impact of those powers on ethnic minorities
  • Helen Law successfully represented the claimant in a case concerning forced labour and domestic servitude

Public Inquiries and Inquests

  • Ben Emmerson QC acted for bereaved family members in the inquest into the death of Alexander Litvinenko
  • Matthew Ryder QC and Alison Macdonald appeared in a civil action on behalf of the family of Ian Tomlinson, who was unlawfully killed during the G20 protests
  • Danny Friedman QC represented the surviving victims of torture and the families of the deceased in the Baha Mousa Public Inquiry [2013] EWHC 1412 (Admin) into the conduct of the British Army in Iraq
  • Hugh Southey QC was appointed to an advisory team seeking fresh investigation into the deaths that occurred during the Hillsborough disaster of 1989

Our lawyers in this area

  • Alex Bailin QC Alex Bailin QC
    Called: 1995 Silk: 2010 CV
  • Joanna Buckley Joanna Buckley
    Called: 2011
  • Michelle Butler Michelle Butler
    Called: 2007
  • Edward Craven
    Called: 2007 CV
  • Anita Davies Anita Davies
    Called: 2011
  • Friedman_D_2017 Danny Friedman QC
    Called: 1996 Silk: 2013
  • Nicholas Gibson Nicholas Gibson
    Called: 2009 CV
  • Jonathan Glasson QC Jonathan Glasson QC
    Called: 1996 Silk: 2013 CV
  • Sir Anthony Hooper Sir Anthony Hooper
    Called: 1965
  • Raza Husain QC Raza Husain QC
    Called: 1993 Silk: 2010
  • Jessica Jones Jessica Jones
    Called: 2013
  • Phillippa Kaufmann QC Phillippa Kaufmann QC
    Called: 1991 Silk: 2011
  • James Laddie QC James Laddie QC
    Called: 1997 Silk: 2012
  • Helen Law
    Called: 2005
  • Alison Macdonald Alison Macdonald QC
    Called: 2000 Silk: 2017 CV
  • Lord Ken Macdonald QC Lord Ken Macdonald QC
    Called: 1978 Silk: 1997
  • Eleni Mitrophanous Eleni Mitrophanous
    Called: 1999
  • Claire Montgomery QC Clare Montgomery QC
    Called: 1980 Silk: 1996 CV
  • Blinne Ni Ghralaigh Blinne Ní Ghrálaigh
    Called: 2005 (England & Wales) 2013 (Belfast) 2017 (Ireland) CV
  • Tim Owen QC Tim Owen QC
    Called: 1983 Silk: 2000
  • Raj Parker
    Called: 1983 CV
  • Matthew Ryder QC Matthew Ryder QC
    Called: 1992 Silk: 2010
  • Jessica Simor QC Jessica Simor QC
    Called: 1992 Silk: 2013 CV
  • Hugh Southey QC Hugh Southey QC
    Called: 1996 Silk: 2010 CV
  • Mark Summers QC Mark Summers QC
    Called: 1996 Silk: 2014 CV
  • Hugh Tomlinson QC Hugh Tomlinson QC
    Called: 1983 Silk: 2002
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