Mark Mulholland QC

Year of Silk


Year of Call

Mark Mulholland QC


White collar crime / serious fraud / bribery, corruption & corporate compliance


Mark Mulholland QC has been a practising member of the Bar since 1994 and during this period has appeared in some of the most high profile and notorious cases to come before the courts in Northern Ireland with significant defence trial experience ranging from serious fraud, revenue, corruption and corporate ‘white collar’ investigations to non jury terrorist and organised crime cases, as well as ‘Troubles related’ legacy inquests.


Mark graduated from Queen’s University Belfast (LL.B),  University College Dublin (LL.M) with a Masters degree in Commercial Law and the Institute of Professional Legal Studies before call to the Bar in 1993.  Mark took Silk in 2011. He is also a practising member of the Bars of Ireland and England and Wales (Middle Temple) and a door tenant at Doughty Street chambers , London. In 2010 Mark served as Chairman of the Professional Conduct Committee of the Bar of Northern Ireland, and was elected Chairman of the General Council of the Bar and of the Executive Council of the Inn of Court of Northern Ireland in 2012 until 2014 having served as vice chairman between 2010 and 2012.  He continued with his busy practice during his time in office. Mark is to be inducted as a member of the Academy of International Trial Lawyers in Washington DC in forthcoming weeks.


Outside of practice Mark has taught at Queen’s University, is a member of the Bar of Northern Ireland Advocacy Training Board and an executive officer on the International Advocacy Training Council and spoke at the inaugural conference on advocacy in Kuala Lumpur in 2014 and assisted with advocacy training at the invitation of the Bar of Hong Kong in 2015. He has delivered a number of keynote  addresses including the Bar Council of England & Wales International Rule of Law Lecture  in 2013, the ICAB World Bar Conference (London) (2012), the Bar of Cape town (2013), and most recently at the IBA annual conference in Vienna in 2015.


Significant cases

Corruption, Revenue & Proceeds of Crime


R v E M [2006] NICC 6 & [2006] NICC 13 - successfully represented client on charges of fraudulent evasion of excise duty, £60 million contrary to S 170 (1) (b) of the Customs & Excise Management Act 1979 & converting proceeds of crime.


R v McP & McP (STEC5783) Represented leading business man on charges of tax evasion & cheating the revenue


R v M & Ors HAR8100 – 25 February 2011 & R v McGeown & Ors - Represented government employee on charges of corruption by crown servant contrary to the prevention of corruption Act 1906.


R v McDRepresented Governmental official  on charges of alleged corruption involving the payment of subsidies / grant funding - not guilty verdict before jury.


R v S - successfully represented self employed business man on allegations of corruption between businessman, police officer & use of confidential information contrary to the Data Protection Act -     


R v G D - successfully represented company director on charges of evasion of duty £1000,000  in a two week jury trial with a not guilty verdict on all counts  & follow up civil proceedings for proceeds of crime for £1000,000 successfully dismissed by the High Court.


R v DM  -  Represented client on criminal charges of Vat fraud against the Revenue  & negotiated a basis of plea and reduction in charge that resulted in a suspended sentence before the court.


R v BMcA -  Alleged Acquisition of the proceeds of crime from major Vat fraud (ongoing).


R v Campsie Sand & Gravel, Doherty & Ors - representation of company director & company - allegations of illegal & hazardous waste on company property & the non payment of landfill tax in the sum of £30,000,0000 - criminal trial pending - abuse of process application currently part heard before the court on basis of misconduct in pubic office giving rise to a manipulation of the process of the court.


R v Shergrim Recycling Ltd & Ors  - representation of two company directors & two companies facing allegations of depositing / keeping controlled waste unlawfully  - prosecution case alleging £3,000,000 due in unpaid tax & issue over liability of company directors - ongoing.


Mark has also delivered talks on the Proceeds of Crime Act, Company Director Disqualification and advised on the provisions of the Bribery Act 2010, as well as advising and counselling on remediation and effective compliance programmes. He has further represented clients in civil and criminal investigations involving HMRC, SOCA, SFO, NCA, MI5 and several international governmental bodies and agencies.


Other significant cases


R v Gault [2004] NICA 25,[2005] BNIL 19, Gault v United Kingdom [2007] All ER (D) 297 - Conviction for murder of husband upon retrial quashed, refusal of the Court of Appeal to re admit the defendant to bail pending further re-trial. Application successful,violation of Art. 5(3) of the European Convention on Human Rights. She further sought  & was awarded damages for non-pecuniary loss pursuant to Art. 41 thereof. The defendant subsequently acquitted at the second retrial.


Re Duffy Judicial Review (No. 2)  2 All ER 364Application for a declaration of incompatibility in respect of paragraphs 29(3) and 36(3) (b) of Schedule 8 of the Terrorism Act 2000 which deal with the circumstances in which a person arrested under section 41 of the Act on reasonable suspicion of being a terrorist may have their period of detention extended for a period of up to 28 days.


R v Paul Duffy & Ors - charges of directing terrorism, conspiracy to murder & planning acts of terrorism contrary to section 5 Terrorism Act 2000 following extensive M15 covert surveillance operation - use of electronic devices (bugging and GPS) - PII on grounds of national security - PII hearing ordering disclosure - no evidence offered - not guilty verdict


R v Colin Duffy & Ors - charges of directing terrorism  following extensive covert surveillance and recording - voice analysis - use of MI5 role players - (Pending 2016)


On behalf of the family of Seamus Dillon - inquest pending into the murder of Seamus Dillon in Mid Ulster in retaliation for the murder of Billy Wright  in the context of collusion & breach of Article 2 ECHR. (Pending 2016)


On behalf of the family of Sam Marshall - inquest pending into the murder of Sam Marshall amid allegations of security force collusion involving MI5. (Pending)


Mark is also briefed in a number of civil cases against the Ministry of Defence and Chief Constable regarding allegations of collusion in murders in Northern Ireland and has recently acted on behalf of the widow of a murder victim in judicial review proceedings to successfully compel the Chief Constable of the PSNI to allocate adequate resources to re-interview suspects to a murder in accordance with the State’s obligations under Article 2 ECHR.




The Bribery Act , Due Diligence & DPA’s -  Counsel magazine February 2016

Wrongful & Reckless Trading - do all Roads Lead to Cork’ -  dealing with the use of company director disqualification and wrongful trading provisions in the UK and counterpart reckless trading provisions in the Republic of Ireland - on the Queens University syllabus for Insolvency law course.


Other experience

Mark has appeared in criminal trials in England and Wales and the Republic of Ireland both in the Special Criminal Court and Criminal Court of Appeal; he has also significant regulatory experience which has included the representation of officers before Police Disciplinary tribunals, prosecuting on behalf of his professional body and advising on issues of regulation in the corporate sphere regarding self reporting and corporate compliance. He has also been media trained and has significant media experience locally and nationally including being interviewed for the Belfast Telegraph, Counsel magazine, ITN News and the BBC. Mark has also been involved for over 20 years with the Citizenship Foundation Mock Trial competition for schools assisting  both locally and nationally and is an executive officer on the International Advocacy Training Council which provides pro bono advocacy training globally.

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