Richard is highly sought after for his non-contentious and advisory work, which sees him regularly advise companies and their individual directors and officers on financial crime and financial sanctions breaches and on compliance with related legal and regulatory obligations.
Richard’s advisory practice draws on his extensive experience of representing clients on contentious financial crime matters; many of which involve novel points of law or procedure. Richard is co-author of one of the leading practitioner texts on the UK’s proceeds of crime legislation, Blackstone’s Guide to the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 (Oxford University Press, 5th ed) and has given expert evidence to the Home Affairs Select Committee.
On the contentious side of his practice Richard is regularly instructed in complex and high profile cases involving allegations of financial crime and related money laundering; particularly where criminal and civil asset recovery powers are engaged to detain, restrain, freeze, recover, forfeit or confiscate assets in the UK or overseas. Richard has a particular interest in and experience of advising on the emerging interface between asset recovery and financial sanctions enforcement. He is routinely instructed to represent the full range of persons affected by the exercise of asset recovery powers and by related judicial orders. Richard also conducts linked litigation in the High Court.
Recent cases of note include:
Representing a prominent defendant in the largest (cash) money laundering case prosecuted in the UK to date (Operation Larkshot), involving allegations of criminal property valued at £266million (2020-2022 ongoing).
Advising a former Airbus Executive under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the Parquet National Financier (PNF) for offences of Bribery and Corruption (£billions) in relation to securing contracts for the supply of commercial and military aircraft. Detailed written representations were submitted on the relevant law and the facts as to the charging decision. The matter was subsequently formally discontinued by the SFO (2020-2022).
Representing a Fintech corporate in proceedings brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with regards to POCA 2002 Account Freezing Orders and Account Forfeiture Orders totalling £2m (2020-2022).
Advising a corporate on disclosures to His Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) under the Contractual Disclosure Facility (CDF) / Code of Practice (COP) 9 and COP 8) as to fraud (Corporate Liability), failing to prevent the facilitation of tax evasion and cheating the public revenue (2021-2022).
Bringing a successful challenge to seizure and detention applications under POCA 2002 brought by HMRC related to high value Listed Assets and cash, on behalf of an ultra HNWI subject of politically charged allegations of criminal conduct (2022).
Advising on the exercise of police powers in connection with an investigation into alleged assistance provided to an offender in connection with a long running, high profile murder investigation conducted by the Metropolitan Police (2022, ongoing).
Representing an extradited defendant in what was said involve the largest (by value) domestic burglary ever prosecuted and associated money laundering offences. The homes of Frank Lampard and Christine Lampard (jewellery valued at £60,000), Mr Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha (cash and jewellery valued at £1million) and Tamara Ecclestone and Jay Rutland (jewellery valued at £25million) were burgled (2021-2022).
Advising a FTSE 100 PLC on AML and POCA issues (2022, ongoing).
Successfully challenged an HMRC cash detention application under POCA 2002 relating to foreign currency valued at £1million, seized at Heathrow Airport (2019).
Successfully challenged an application for an Account Forfeiture Order under POCA 2002 in relation to funds held in the client account of a solicitors firm (2019-2020).
Representing the principal defendant in a series of Film Tax fraud trials and an independent financial adviser in a Film Tax Fraud (2015-2018).
Representing four defendants in an international bribery and corruption case prosecuted by the SFO (2016-2017).
Defended in a multi £m fraud on the Welsh Assembly and the EU linked to grants for the development of fish feed farms (2018-2019).
Defended in confiscation proceedings in the HBOS case, one of the UK’s biggest banking frauds (2018).
Defended criminal/confiscation proceedings in a Town and Country Planning Act prosecution (2017-2018).
£900m multi-jurisdictional criminal tax fraud and money laundering investigation (2016).
Richard is listed in both legal Directories. In Chambers & Partners 2023 edition Richard is ranked in both POCA Work & Asset Forfeiture (Band 2) and Financial Crime (Band 3).
"He is very experienced and just really a great silk. Very well respected in the courts, judges like him and he's very good at dealing with clients in stressful situations."
"A no-nonsense, determined and courageous advocate."
“Richard is charming, clever and someone who argues difficult points really well. He is dead straightforward in his approach and pretty destructive if faced with anybody who isn’t absolutely up to speed on their law.”
"He's very charming, very bright, very hard-working and obviously a specialist in financial crime, POCA work and tax fraud."
"He is strong in court and has a good presence in front of the judge." "An extremely talented barrister whose knowledge, particularly of POCA, is phenomenal."
"He really cares about clients and wants to do a good job for them. He is dedicated, hard- working and produces excellent written submissions."
In the Legal 500 2023 edition he is ranked as a Leading Silk in both Fraud: Crime (Band 2) and in POCA and Asset Forfeiture (Band 2):
“Richard is a first rate barrister. He has vast experience in financial crime and is well trusted by clients. He is very commercial and a great team player.”
‘Erudite and effective advocacy. He is extremely knowledgeable in both the criminal and the civil POCA regimes. He is utterly professional, whilst being down to earth and friendly to work with at the same time.’
“He tells it like it is – always straightforward and watertight advice."
“He speaks with great authority and encyclopaedic knowledge and gives solid, practical advice.”
"A barrister of standout quality” as “Proceeds of Crime Act guru” with his “particular expertise in money laundering cases” being recognised.
Richard has presented seminars on a variety of topics including at the Law Society Risk and Compliance Annual Conference (Fiduciary relationships – corruption and criminal finances) and the Offshore Alert conference, London (corporate facilitation of tax evasion). He has written articles that have been published in Archbold News and the Solicitor’s Journal and he has contributed to LexisNexis UK Human Rights Updater service and the drafting of consultation papers on behalf of the Criminal Bar Association and Liberty. Richard is joint leader of Chambers’ Business Crime and Investigations Team.
R v M & Others – Fraudulent Trading – £millions fraud on the Welsh Assembly and EU.
R v O & Others – Conspiracy to cheat the Revenue – Company Director (IFA) – sideways loss relief claims of £2.4milion - Film partnership.
R v MS, JB, DJ & RP – Bribery – conspiracy to make corrupt payments – represented four individuals – suspended sentences imposed.
R v POTTER & Others – Conspiracy to Cheat the Revenue - £multi-millions claimed as sideways loss tax relief through losses incurred on film projects. (Read More)
R v CHAHAL - Court of Appeal proceedings re: prosecutors appeal against Judge’s ruling on s.8(4) reducing claimed benefit figure of £185 million to £107,000. Reported at:  2 Cr. App. R. (S.) 35.
R v NW, SW & Others – Court of Appeal proceedings re: degree of proof required to establish that monies are derived from criminal conduct in POCA money laundering. Reported at:  3 All ER 533
R v AUSTIN – Confiscation proceedings - £13million confiscation order reduced to one of £36,000
Missing Trader VAT Frauds – Richard has been instructed in trials, confiscation proceedings and related appellate proceedings in Operations: EMERSED (£20million), SHEPHERD (£65million), DEVOUT (£37million) and DUMA (£185million). (Read More) Related Appeals - Reported at:  EWHC 1950 (Admin),  EWCA Crim 79,  EWCA Crim 2837. (Read More).
R v FRIEND & Others - Veterinary Medicinal Products regulatory offences. (Read More)
R v SCARROTT – £23.5milion VAT fraud in the construction industry. (Read More)
R v MILLARD & Others – Operation Elveden – Journalist at The Sun accused of conspiracy to cause misconduct in public office as a result of payments being made to public officials. (Read More)
R v JO – Historic sexual offences committed against 12 male pupils of 2 separate boarding schools.