Noel is an experienced and versatile practitioner in criminal law, with a practice evenly balanced between prosecuting and defending. He has conducted trials of homicide, rape, historic sexual abuse, drugs/people trafficking, serious violence, serious fraud, and has taken instructions as a leading junior. He routinely provides advice and opinion on all aspects of criminal cases, and is moreover fully cognisant of issues regarding disclosure, public interest immunity and confiscation. Noel also sits as a Recorder on the Western Circuit.
As a substantial part of Noel’s practice has involved cases regarding sexual and child abuse, he has acquired significant expertise in trials involving child defendants and/or witnesses, vulnerable witnesses, and cross-examination via video-link. He has been on the Crown’s Rape List since its inception.
Noel has also acquired expertise in workplace-related criminal cases, including sexual offences, and NHS fraud. He has prosecuted regulatory matters for the county of Essex; acts for the General Medical Council; and has defended cases of serious malfeasance in public office.
Noel regularly provides advice on grounds of appeal and has appeared in the Court of Appeal on numerous occasions.
Although a busy practitioner, Noel has invested time in extending his range of activity and qualifications, mainly in the field of international law. He has undertaken major projects, including work in Afghanistan in Kabul and Kandahar, building the country’s first team of public defenders, attending courts and prisons, as well as liaising with embassies, the UN and other international entities. Thereafter, he obtained an LLM in the USA, specialising in international and criminal law. As a member of the Human Rights Clinic he co-drafted a study paper for the UN International Expert on Minorities
Noel has defended a wide a range of cases involving fraud, ranging from NHS to probate fraud, and has advised and conducted appeals in cases of money-laundering. He regularly advises upon and conducts Proceeds of Crime hearings, often though not always arising from Class A drug and cultivation cases as well as fraud.
Noel has prosecuted a varied caseload from wide-ranging drugs gang conspiracies to counterfeit currency schemes. He has also prosecuted organised football violence involving numerous defendants.
Noel is regularly instructed in cases of murder, conspiracy/attempted murder and manslaughter running the gamut of drugs-related violence to street fights and domestic violence. He now often acts as leading counsel. In tandem with his homicide/drugs practices, Noel has for many years defended and prosecuted in cases of serious violence, including numerous cases involving firearms, other weapons and noxious substances, as well as bomb hoaxes. As a result of his extensive work in rape and child abuse cases, Noel has also developed a specialism in child cruelty and neglect cases.
Noel routinely advises and conducts trials both for the Crown and defence in cases of rape and sexual assault, historic sexual abuse and child and extreme pornography. He is rape-accredited and specialises in cases involving vulnerable witnesses. He conducts trials of this kind on a regular basis. Given the routine nature of this area of work insofar as Noel is concerned, only a few cases cited specifically below.
LLM International Law, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, NY 2007
Inns of Court School of Law 1994
College of Law 1993
History: University of London 1983-1986
South Eastern Circuit (Committee Member)
Criminal Bar Association
Recorder of the Crown Court, Western Circuit
CPS Grade 3 and accredited Rape Panel
2004 International Legal Fellow, Kabul, Afghanistan