Laura is a dedicated criminal practitioner who has spent 10 years working within criminal litigation.
Laura enjoys a busy Crown Court practice as both a led junior and junior alone. She is regularly instructed in relation to complex and serious cases, including murder, serious violence, modern slavery, large scale drug conspiracies, fraud and sexual offending.
Laura has extensive trial advocacy experience in cases involving vulnerable and child witnesses, complex medical and financial expert evidence, intricate legal arguments and novel points of law.
Prior to being called to the Bar, Laura qualified as a solicitor advocate defending cases against the Crown Prosecution Service, National Crime Agency, HMRC, RSPCA and the Environment Agency.
Laura also gained experience of regulatory crime, having prosecuted Housing Act, environmental, trading standards and food hygiene offences as well as confiscation proceedings, on behalf of a prominent London local authority.
Laura has experience of liquor licensing, including appeal proceedings.
In her spare time Laura enjoys attending pop up theatre events and restaurants. She is also an avid supporter of Newcastle United.
Violent & Organised Crime
Laura’s has a broad experience of appellate work, including appeals against conviction and sentence and judicial review proceedings.
Laura has a special interest in judicial review of decisions not to prosecute, specifically in relation to allegations of stalking and hate crime and decisions to prosecute juveniles, vulnerable persons and victims of trafficking.
- R v Ahmed (2019) EWCA Crim 1085 (reported on Westlaw): Successful appeal against sentence in relation to a fifth conviction for robbery offences. (7years 11months’ imprisonment reduced to 6years imprisonment). Guidance provided as to the meaning of serious physical harm as it pertains to Category 1 of the Sentencing Council: Definitive Guidelines: Street Robbery.
- R v P (2019) Successful appeal against a Prosecution Costs Order out of time. (Costs order of £19,076.46 reduced to £5,325.70)
- R v J (2019) – Successful appeal against sentence in relation to a second conviction for possession of class A substances with intent to supply.
- M v CPS (2018) – Application for permission to judicially review a decision to withdraw a charge under s4 POA and replace it with a charge of affray, in order to provide a mechanism for a juvenile defendant to be sent for trial in the Crown Court. Permission refused; however, the Crown subsequently offered no evidence in the associated criminal proceedings.
- R v T (2018) – Successful appeal against sentence – possession of a bladed article (20 months’ imprisonment reduced to 8 months imprisonment).
- R v Fraser (2017) EWCA Crim 507 (reported on Westlaw) – Successful appeal against sentence – guidance provided in relation to the factors to take into consideration when determining the proportionality of immediate custodial terms in the case of sole carers of dependent children (teenagers).
Fraud & Proceeds of Crime
Laura has gained significant experience as both a led junior and junior alone in cases relating to violent and organised crime. She is regularly instructed in cases including murder, serious violence, modern slavery, large scale drug conspiracies, fraud and sexual offending.
- R v L & Others (2019) – Modern Slavery & Money Laundering Led junior in a conspiracy to traffic Romanian nationals to the UK with a view to them performing forced and compulsory labour and conspiracy to exploit those said Romanian nationals. Over 30,000 served pages of evidence. Defendant acquitted 7 weeks into the trial following successful half time submission.
- R v W & Others (2019) – Conspiracy to Supply
Led junior in a large-scale conspiracy to supply heroin and cocaine across county lines, involving three drug lines linked to a prominent London gang. Over 114,000 served pages of evidence, including a substantial amount of telephone and ANPR data, along with surveillance and CCTV evidence.
- R v K & Others (2018) – Murder Led by Edmund Vickers QC. 14-year-old defendant accused of the pre-mediated murder of an 18-year-old male.
- R v Y & Others (2018) – Conspiracy to Sell Firearms. Led by Sailesh Mehta. Defendant accused of arranging the importation of multiple firearms, ammunition and silencers from Lithuania into the United Kingdom and the sale of those said items in the United Kingdom. With over 25,000 served pages of evidence the Crown relied on a substantial amount of mobile telephone, cell site and ANPR data.
- R v H & Another (2018) – Possession of Firearm with Intent to Cause Fear & Attempted S18 GBH x 3 Defendant alleged to have fired a loaded shot gun at the windscreen of a motor vehicle containing three occupants, in a revenge attack following an incident of road rage. Acquitted following trial.
- R v Q (2018) – S18 GBH & Attempted Robbery Defendant acquitted of one count of wounding with intent (stabbing) and one count of attempted knife point robbery.
- R v S (2018) – Knife Point Robbery Defendant acquitted of robbing a taxi driver at knife point, causing injury.
- R v N & Others (2017) – Conspiracy to Keep a Brothel & Conspiracy to Supply Class A & B A multi-handed conspiracy to keep multiple brothels and being concerned in the supply of cocaine and cannabis to patrons of those brothels. Case involved over 30,000 served pages of evidence, including telephone data and surveillance footage.
- R v E & Another (2016) – Conspiracy to Import Class A 18-year-old defendant indicted in relation to one count of conspiracy to import MDMA via the dark web and one count of supplying MDMA when he was 16 years of age.
- R v S & Others (2016) – Possession with Intent to Supply Class A Defendant acquitted of two counts of possession with intent to supply a significant amount of heroin and crack cocaine. Although he was the driver, his passengers were convicted.
- R v M & Others (2015) – Conspiracy to Supply Class A Led junior in a cross-county conspiracy to supply heroin and crack cocaine into the North East of England. Case involved over 10,000 served pages of evidence, including telephone data, cell site, ANPR and covert recording within motor vehicles.
Laura has developed an in-depth knowledge of the law and procedure relating to fraud and money laundering offences, as well as confiscation proceedings, restraint and cash forfeiture. She is an active member of the Proceeds of Crime Lawyers Association, the Female Fraud Forum and the Young Fraud Lawyers Association.
- R v D (2019) – Money Laundering It was alleged that the defendant was part of a money laundering operation linked to the Hawala Banking system. Total value over £120k.
- R v L & Others (2017) – Fraud by False Representation Led junior in a large-scale fraud by false representation, concerning an allegation that an employee of a car finance dealership had obtained finance for fleet customers following the provision of either false information or false documents over a 3year period. Defendant acquitted following trial.
- R v O & Others (2017) – Conspiracy to Defraud/Conspiracy to Burgle It was alleged that the defendant was part of a group operating sham companies targeting elderly residents under the premise of undertaking gardening work. Total value over £100k.
- R v H & Others (2017) – Conspiracy to Commit Fraud Defendant alleged to have purchased card details via the dark web which were used to purchase items from John Lewis and Harrods. Case involved large amounts of surveillance, cell site and ANPR data along with telephone downloads. Total value £50k.
- R v G (2016) – Fraud by False Representation Following a surveillance operation, it was alleged that the defendant, a courier, had falsified documentation to give the perception that goods had been delivered to customers, whose accounts had been opened fraudulently, with the intention of retaining the goods for onward sale. Acquitted following trial.
Laura has experience of defending allegations of sexual offending. She also has experience of challenging the imposition of various associated court orders – such as sexual harm prevention orders and restraining orders.
- R v U (2019) – Historic Sexual Assault of a Child under 13 31-year-old defendant accused of touching the naked genitals of his 5-year-old cousin when he was 16 years of age.
- R v B (2018) – Sexual Assault (Youth Court) 17-year-old defendant accused of sexual assault, committed whilst he was 15 years of age. Prosecution discontinued following representations relating to breaches of the PACE codes of practice and disclosure obligations under the CPIA.
- R v X (2018) – Indecent Images 18-year-old defendant accused of making indecent images of children by pressurising classmates into sending indecent images to him when he was 14 -15 years of age. No evidence offered following representations that the prosecution was not in the public interest and the delay in bringing the prosecution could amount to an abuse of process.
- R v Z (2017) – Sexual Assault Delivery driver accused of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl whilst delivering food to her home address.
- R v V (2017) – Sexual Assault Manager accused of sexually assaulting a teenage employee at work.
- R v F (2017) – Assault by Penetration (Youth Court) 13-year-old defendant accused of the forcible digital penetration of his girlfriend.
- R v U (2016) – Indecent Images Defendant acquitted in relation to two counts of a multi-count indictment concerning allegations of possession of indecent images of children, some of which he was accused of taking himself during trips of Columbia.