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Ian Whitehurst

Call: 1994

recommendations

“A real fighter who makes really incisive legal points.”

“A pragmatic advocate who is very good with clients. He is able to steer a case in a tactically astute way in order to achieve a good outcome for his clients.”

Chambers UK Bar Guide [2020]

“Approachable, pragmatic and good with clients.”

“A proactive barrister who gives clear advice.”

Legal 500 [2020]

“He thinks outside the box, is tenacious in court, very experienced and has a good breadth of knowledge of serious white-collar crime.”

“A pleasure to work with, he gets results.”

Chambers UK Bar Guide [2019]

“A very good performer. He is fearless and defendants love him. He will get stuck in but knows when not to lock horns with witnesses. A very good tactician.”

Chambers UK Bar Guide [2017]

“A very shrewd barrister.”

Legal 500 [2018/19]

“Highly experienced in serious organised crime cases.”

Legal 500 [2016] - Crime - Tier 1

“Has a long history of prosecuting and defending serious criminal offences before the court. His remit covers gang-related homicides, drug conspiracies and armed robberies, among other matters.”

Chambers UK Bar Guide [2016] - Crime

“Combines extensive skill in serious organised crime with knowledge of a wide range of business crime offences. He represents both individuals and corporates and is well versed in tax fraud, money laundering, and accounting and banking fraud.”

Chambers UK Bar Guide [2016] - Financial Crime

Education

University of Hull, LLB (Hons) (1993)

 

Practice

Ian is a leading financial crime, crime and regulatory barrister and is recognised as a leading individual in those fields in Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500.

His practice can be divided principally into 4 main areas but there is a considerable overlap between the practice areas that he specialises in.

Firstly, Ian is a Leading Junior in heavyweight criminal work and defends and prosecutes in equal measure across a wide range of serious organised criminal activity – homicide, firearms, drugs and armed robberies.

Secondly, in financial crime matters Ian has specialised for many years as Leading Counsel in the fields of MTIC VAT fraud, Direct Tax Fraud, Money Laundering, False Accounting and Corporate Misfeasance.

As regards his regulatory work, Ian has been appointed to the Specialist Regulatory Panel of Counsel and prosecutes and defends in equal measure in the regulatory field concentrating upon health and safety, environmental and information law. He also acts for the General Medical Council in disciplinary tribunals.

Finally, Ian also has a substantial practice in the niche areas of cyber crime and data protection work, particularly excelling in cases with a technical angle. He advises individuals and companies in relation to criminal and regulatory proceedings as well as acting in major data breach civil litigation for claimants and defendants.

Ian also practises from 7 Harrington St Chambers, Liverpool.

 

Crime

Ian is a highly regarded and sought after Leading Junior in Crime and has been recognised as such for several years in Chambers and Partners and The Legal 500.

He advises clients at all stages of criminal proceedings, from pre charge to the appellate stage, has an extensive advisory practice and is a skilled advocate before juries, tribunals and the appellate courts.

He defends as well as prosecutes in a wide range of serious criminal matters including gang related homicide, serious sexual offences, large scale drugs and firearms conspiracies, corruption cases and armed robberies.

He has developed an extensive knowledge of disclosure, covert surveillance, jurisdictional issues and a detailed understanding of the principles surrounding the court’s discretionary powers to exclude evidence and stay proceedings.

Current and Recent Cases:

  • Acting for the defendant in a large scale drugs and firearms conspiracy
  • Acting for the defendant in an attempted murder against a serving police officer (Crown Court and Court of Appeal)
  • Prosecuting large multi handed scale drugs operation
  • Prosecuting an OCG involved in the kidnap and torture of the victim
  • Acting for the Defendant in historical sexual abuse case
  • Representing the same defendant in three large scale overlapping drugs conspiracies

 

Financial Crime

Ian is a highly regarded and sought after Leading Junior in Financial Crime, Crime and Regulatory work.

He advises clients at all stages of criminal proceedings, from pre charge to the appellate stage, has an extensive advisory practice and is a skilled advocate before a jury, tribunals and the appellate courts.

Ian has extensive experience in all matters relating to commercial fraud and other financial misconduct in particular MTIC Vat Fraud, Direct and Indirect Tax Fraud, Money Laundering and False Accounting.

He has advised companies and individuals in relation to tax investigations conducted by HMRC concerning MTIC fraud as well as advising individuals and companies upon their rights to challenge HMRC findings in the Tax Tribunals.

He also has a detailed knowledge of all aspects of restraint and confiscation law, civil asset recovery and asset tracing and has advised individuals, companies and prosecuting authorities (the Police, the CPS, SFO and BIS) in this area as well as lecturing in the U.K. and Off Shore. Ian advises also in the niche areas concerning the challenging of search warrants, production orders and privilege related issues.

From a regulatory perspective, Ian is experienced in advising companies and individuals on issues of compliance, money laundering regulations and fiduciary duties of directors and the consequences arising for directors through disqualification. His work off shore has principally concentrated upon these issues.

Ian specialises in the developing area of Private Prosecutions and advises corporates and individuals in relation to the use and deployment of private prosecutions where there has been financial misfeasance or fraud committed. Linked to this field is his work in advising corporations on internal investigations and disciplinary proceedings.

Ian has been ranked as a Leading Junior for several years in Chambers & Partners and Legal 500 for his work in crime and financial crime as well as his regulatory practice. He has been appointed to the specialist prosecutorial lists in fraud, serious crime, confiscation and regulatory law.

Recent and Current Cases:

  • Advising former solicitor involved in multi million pound overseas property investment fraud (pre charge). Advising on warrants, seizure of privilege material and restraint matters.
  • Advising a company and its directors in one of the first ever prosecutions brought by the The Pension Regulator under the Computer Misuse Act.
  • Advising company in relation to a private prosecution arising from a large scale fraud committed upon the company.
  • Acted as Leading Counsel prosecuting a million pound fraud committed by a Managing Director of a large agro – industrial company.
  • Acting as Sole Counsel prosecuting former accountant involved in investment fraud committed on his client base over several years.
  • Advised high net worth individual off shore pre charge in relation to alleged bankruptcy fraud.
  • Advised law firm who had been the victim of a cyber fraud attack by third parties.

 

Data Breach & Privacy

Ian is instructed on a regular basis to advise and represent a wide range of clients, including individuals, directors and companies, in relation to criminal and civil investigations by the industry regulator (the ICO); advisory and compliance issues and the developing area of data litigation in all its forms.

He is a much sought after leading practitioner in the field of data breach claims for individuals and companies whom have had their personal and sensitive data lost or breached by third parties.

An area of particular interest to him is the development and expansion of representative actions and group litigation in the data breach field and he is presently instructed in several actions as Led Junior Counsel.

Having developed specialist expertise in “right to be forgotten” claims, Ian was also recently instructed to represent a former European politician in a claim against Google.

Ian has put together a team of lawyers and cyber security experts to develop civil fraud claims arising from crypto currencies and other cyber based fraudulent activity. In addition, he is at the forefront of developing models to protect and manage the reputation of leading individuals and corporates.

He has written several articles on data protection and the new digital age and has delivered lectures and video briefings on the subject as well as commenting in the media on recent developments.

 

Environmental Regulation

Ian is a specialist regulatory and corporate defence barrister with significant experience in all aspects of corporate crime and regulatory law.

He has been appointed to the Specialist List of  Regulatory Counsel to prosecute cases of a complex nature in this field but is also instructed by individuals and companies to advise and represent in a diverse range of complex regulatory matters.

He particularly specialises in cases involving waste disposal and waste management license regulations.  Ian’s experience in criminal law means that he is well placed to deal with large POCA cases which invariably follow in these types of cases.

He has also lectured to planning enforcement officers in relation to confiscation and the financial aspects of the investigation process.

Ian is recognised as a leader in the regulatory field and is listed in the Legal 500 as a Leading Junior in the area of regulatory law.

 

Health & Safety

Ian is a specialist regulatory and corporate defence barrister with significant experience in all aspects of corporate crime and regulatory law with a specific emphasis on health and safety litigation.

He has been appointed to the Specialist List of Regulatory Counsel to prosecute cases of a complex nature in this field but is also instructed by individuals and companies to advise and represent in a diverse range of complex regulatory matters. The following areas are of particular interest to Ian:

  • Work related serious injuries and fatalities
  • Gross Negligence & Corporate Manslaughter
  • Corporate Misfeasance & Directors Liability

Ian is recognised as a leader in the regulatory field and is listed in the Legal 500 as a Leading Junior in the area of regulatory law. Illustrative cases include:

  • Representing construction company in relation to breaches of fire safety legislation and working at height regulations on a construction project in Manchester city centre. Small financial penalties imposed.
  • Prosecuting company accused of failing to protect employees who were seriously injured whilst working at height on a public building. Case ongoing.
  • Instructed to prosecute and advise by a local authority on serious accident in the workplace which led to individual facing life changing injuries (amputation of fingers). Advised on offences, evidence and sentencing powers of court. Large fines imposed against company and director.
  • Instructed to represent national construction company in relation to issues surrounding the management of an ongoing construction site and health and safety issues raised by the local council. Proceedings brought, small fine imposed.
  • Instructed to represent well established restaurant in relation to health and safety matters concerning the management of their kitchens and gas safety issues. Case ongoing.
  • Instructed to advise company and director in health and safety investigation concerning major incident on a construction site resulting in worker being paralysed due to alleged failures in lifting equipment. Case ongoing.

 

Commercial Fraud

Ian has extensive experience in all matters relating to commercial fraud and other financial misconduct in particular MTIC Vat Fraud, Direct and Indirect Tax Fraud, Money Laundering and False Accounting.

He also has a detailed knowledge of all aspects of confiscation law, civil asset recovery and asset tracing and has advised individuals, companies and prosecuting authorities (the Police, the CPS, SFO and BIS) in this area as well as lecturing in the U.K. and off shore as well as writing articles in this field.

From a regulatory perspective, Ian is experienced in advising companies and individuals on issues of compliance, money laundering regulations and fiduciary duties of directors and the consequences arising for directors through disqualification.

Linked to his extensive data protection practice (Civil, Regulatory & Crime), Ian is presently instructed in several substantial push payment fraud cases and advising on SIM Swap fraud cases for a leading national firm

Ian has been ranked as a Leading Junior for several years in Chambers & Partners for his Criminal Commercial Fraud work and is rapidly increasing his cyber civil fraud practice. Some recent cases include:-

Commercial Fraud

  • R v JA – instructed to defend in regulatory prosecution relating to the sale of communication devices pre programmed to circumvent copyright law.
  • R v HP – instructed as Leading Junior Counsel to represent a defendant involved in a £33 million MTIC fraud.
  • R v MM – instructed as Junior Counsel to represent a defendant accused of involvement in an £8 million indirect tax fraud.
  • R v AM – instructed to represent a company and its director accused of false accounting arising from a trading standards investigation into the misuse of a government backed energy saving scheme.
  • R v ML – instructed to represent a defendant accused of large scale conspiracy to defraud car finance companies.

Cyber Fraud

  • Re F – representing a Claimant who lost in excess of a £100,000 after her solicitors IT systems were hacked and the monies transferred overseas
  • Re D – representing a Claimant who lost thousands of pounds after she was the victim of a “push payment fraud”. Litigation is due to commence against the Claimant’s bank and the recipient bank for their failings in preventing the fraud and the dissipation of her assets.
  • Re X – advising a law firm who had been the victim of a cyber attack and the consequences that flowed from it concerning the firm’s regulatory obligations and the impact on their insurance coverage.

Financial Regulation

  • Re CO – instructed to represent a financial professional in relation to a historical investigation conducted by the Financial Ombudsman concerning allegations of pension mis-selling.
  • Re X – instructed to advise several off shore based financial professionals in relation to money laundering compliance issues and the impact upon their business of provisions in the Criminal Finances Act.
  • Re Z – instructed to advise a company and its directors in relation to ongoing tax investigation and compliance issues relating to allegations surrounding them of overseas investment fraud.

Appointments

List B Specialist Regulatory Panel

Level 4 Specialist Serious Crime Group Panel (CPS)

Level 4 Prosecutor General Crime Panel (CPS)

Level 4 Specialist Proceeds of Crime Panel (CPS)

Level 3 Specialist Fraud Panel (CPS)

Specialist Rape Panel (CPS)

Disclosure Counsel for Serious Fraud Office (SFO)

Licensed Advocate Isle of Man (2012)

Visiting lecturer at the University of Lancaster

 

Publications

Ian has written several articles on the issues of financial crime and the criminal justice system which are listed below. Links to the full-text of all of these can be found using the links below:

Investigatory Powers Act and the new oversight regime
Consumer rights and slow-running Apple software
Data breaches, vicarious liability of employers and the impact on the insurance industry

Data Protection Day—enforcement of Corporate Crime – corporate crime enforcement in light of the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).

Pension Liberation Fraud: New Kid on the Block

Chatrooms and 21st Century Insider Dealing
A Practical Guide to POCA & Unused Material: a defence perspective
Assessing the impact of R (Virgin Media) v Zinga
Is a cheque book better than a defence statement
Law & Democracy
A Taxing Time Ahead The Reality Behind The Rhetoric

 

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