|DX:||145960 Bournemouth 19|
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|Call||2002 (Middle Temple)|
|Memberships||Western Circuit, CBA
John's practice is principally in criminal defence. He appears regularly in the Crown Court in the Midlands and Western Circuits. Recent cases include serious violence, robbery, drug supply/conspiracy, fraud and serious sexual offences, particularly offences against children and involving youths and those with learning difficulties.
He communicates easily with a range of clients, especially the young and vulnerable, and has a comfortable and persuasive manner with juries. Strengths include comprehensive fact management, incisive understanding and application of the law and effective cross-examination. John pays special attention to the provision of written argument and advocacy.
He is frequently instructed privately in the magistrates' court.
Two recent appellate cases of particular interest involve the challenging of findings of dangerousness and the following of sentencing guidelines.
John often undertakes cases out of the ordinary (see below).
John retains Grade 2 CPS prosecution status and formerly prosecuted for Revenue and Customs (drug and tobacco importation, tax evasion) and for the Department for Work and Pensions.
John has appeared in the fast track, the employment tribunal and inquests. He formerly acted for the Child Support Agency in both family proceedings and county court actions.
John regularly represents at parole board hearings.
Appellate cases of interest
R v Southall  EWCA Crim, 7 July 2005, court activating suspended sentence on the commission of a further offence during the operational period not giving sufficient credit for compliance with community requirements.
R v Jeffcoate  EWCA Crim 1079, 27 April 2010, wide judicial discretion in finding of dangerousness confirmed, despite favourable psychiatric report.
R v de Andrade das Neves Soudo  EWCA Crim 1390, 12 May 2011, breach of trust in theft extended from 'classic' examples to the relationship between adult co-habitees.
R v W  EWCA Crim, 19 April 2012, sentencing guidelines must be followed except in the rarest of cases, particularly in sexual offences involving children, even though the resulting sentence appears severe.
Blows v Herefordshire Council  EWHC 666 (Admin), 17 March 2009, magistrates' court's decision not Wednesbury unreasonable that a convicted individual, one of the first pub landlords to be convicted of permitting smoking after the ban, pay full prosecution costs despite being the subject of an IVA.
Cases out of the ordinary
In addition to the smoking case above, John defended a man who kept 40 Rottweilers as pets in an isolated farmhouse in an ASBO application, and a recent dangerous dog defence concerned a Chihuahua cross.
John arrived late at the Bar after successful careers in agriculture, teaching (further education and prison education) and project management for a charity.
In his spare time John remains involved in farming (horses and beef cattle).
Qualifications: MA (Cantab), PgDL, Cert Ed (FE), NCA, C&G Farm Management.