Julian Knowles QC

Called 1994 Silk 2011
Julian Knowles

‘A very clever man who is brought in for big cases’ – Chambers & Partners 2015
Julian is a high-profile and acclaimed practitioner who specialises in:
• Crime and corporate crime, including fraud and health and safety
• Regulatory law
• Extradition and international criminal law
• Human rights
• Media law
Julian is both a highly skilled and experienced trial counsel and an accomplished appellate expert.  He is instructed regularly in courts at the highest levels and has appeared in over 30 cases in the House of Lords, Privy Council and Supreme Court.  
Regarded as a ‘stellar junior’ (Chambers & Partners 2011), Julian has been recognised as an ‘exceptional’ silk who is ‘lauded’ by his peers (Who’s Who Legal 2015).  As a consequence, he is in great demand as a leader in trials and appeals of factual and legal complexity in the UK and overseas.
Julian is also one of the UK’s best known and most experienced international criminal lawyers and is often involved in multi-jurisdictional cases involving extradition, mutual assistance, and money laundering issues.
Julian has an international practice and advises in relation to jurisdictions all around the world including, in particular, Hong Kong, the Caribbean and the Channel Islands. He has been called to the Bars of Northern Ireland and the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court.
Julian is the author or co-author of a number textbooks in his fields of practice, including The Law of Extradition and Mutual Assistance (3rd Edn, Oxford, 2013), which is acknowledged to be the leading work in the field.
Julian’s full practice profile and list of cases can be found on his cv, available here.
Julian is recommended by the leading directories in all of his main fields of practice including crime, fraud, extradition and civil liberties.
Chambers & Partners 2015 said that Julian is ‘A very clever man who is brought in for big cases.’
The peer review conducted by Who’s Who Legal 2015 found that ‘the “exceptional” Julian Knowles QC is lauded for his “persuasiveness in court and ability to form watertight arguments.’
Chambers & Partners 2014 said that Julian is ‘very highly respected by peers and clients alike’ and that he ‘stands out for his wide-ranging practice’. It noted that he is regarded as ‘very strong academically’ and ‘very strong on the law’. Others said that he is ‘extremely able and intelligent’ and ‘good at cases with unusual legal issues’ and that he ‘gives clear advice to professional and lay clients on complex law’. 
Chambers & Partners 2013 described Julian as ‘technically strong’ and ‘much in demand’, ‘a delight to work with’ and ‘persuasive in court’, and recommended him in Crime, Crime: Extradition Experts and Fraud: Criminal.
Particularly high profile cases in which Julian has been involved include:
• R v Trinity Mirror plc and another (2015, securing the acquittal of a daily newspaper editor – in - chief on a charge arising from a story)
• South Africa v Shrien Dewani (2010-2014, representing Shrien Dewani, whose extradition was sought by South Africa for allegedly murdering his wife on honeymoon)
• R v Vicky Pryce (2013, defending Chris Huhne’s ex-wife, on ‘points swapping’ charges
• Phone hacking litigation (2013, representing victims of phone hacking)
• R v Office of the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police (2007; prosecution arising from the shooting of Jean Charles De Menezes)
 R v Kenneth Noye (2011, the M25 murder)
• The Pinochet case (1998-2000, representing General Pinochet in the extradition case brought by Spain)
• R v Siôn Jenkins (2004 – 2006, the ‘Billie-Jo Jenkins’ murder)
• R v David Chaytor and others (2009 – 2011, defending several MPs accused in relation to their expenses claims)
• R v Corporal Donald Payne (2006-2007, the war crimes court-martial of British soldiers)
• R (Nunn) v Chief Constable of Suffolk (2014, Supreme Court; crime/public law; duty of disclosure post-conviction)
• R v Mackle and others (2014, Supreme Court; asset restraint and confiscation)
• Nigel Brown v The State (2012, Privy Council; death penalty; fitness to plead)
• Marcus Daniel v The State (2012, Privy Council; death penalty ; diminished responsibility)
Julian has a substantial advisory practice and is frequently instructed by large City firms and specialist practices to provide strategic advice to governments and corporate and private clients and to find innovative solutions to complex legal issues.
Julian is standing counsel to a major newspaper group and advises on investigatory and pre-publication issues and regulatory matters affecting the media.  The stories he advises upon make headlines on an almost daily basis.

Recent areas of advice include:

• Advising a major international bank on letters of request in criminal proceedings
• Advising the former Chief Executive of an off-shore Stock Exchange in regulation to a major inquiry by its regulator
• Advising the Crown Prosecution Service’s Special Crime Division on potential prosecution arising from death in custody
• Advising a major City law firm on production orders served on it by HMRC
• Advising BAE Systems plc and Rolls-Royce plc in relation to SFO inquiries into alleged bribery and corruption
• Advising the Government of Israel regarding potential arrest warrants for visiting Ministers
• Advising political parties on funding issues
• Advising a Formula 1 team on regulatory and criminal law issues
• Advising a political party concerning political funding
• Advising a well-known former newspaper editor in relation to alleged insider dealing
Julian can be instructed directly in suitable cases under the Bar’s Direct Access scheme.
Julian accepts instructions under the Bar Council Standard Contractual Terms, details of which can be found here.