John Binns - Partner
John Binns is an experienced and versatile criminal defence lawyer, whose expertise includes:
- Cartel defence – advising senior airline employees in connection with price-fixing allegations brought by the Office of Fair Trading and the US Department of Justice;
- Corruption – advising suspects and witnesses in high-profile investigations by the police and Serious Fraud Office;
- Extradition – including successful challenges to requests by the government of the Russian Federation on grounds of political motivation and breaches of the Human Rights Act;
- Financial Conduct Authority (previously Financial Services Authority) cases involving allegations of insider trading and market abuse;
- Fraud – including carousel and land banking frauds;
- Internal investigations for corporates and firms, either in conjunction with a police or SFO enquiry, or as potential self-report cases;
- Interpol Red Notices – advising on challenges to requests by various national bureaux (eg in Azerbaijan, Russia, and Venezuela) on the grounds that they are politically motivated and breach article 3 of Interpol’s constitution;
- Money laundering – numerous cases, including complex, high-profile allegations with a significant international element;
- Targeted (or ‘smart’) sanctions – representing the subjects of restrictive measures imposed by the Council of the European Union arising from the Arab Spring, including a challenge before the General Court (formerly the Court of First Instance) in Luxembourg.
He has also dealt with disciplinary investigations by ACCA and the Bar Standards Board, proceedings for contempt of court, judicial review of public authorities by the Administrative Court, and applications to the Exceptional Cases Unit of the Metropolitan Police (which deals with the deletion of arrest records and destruction of DNA samples and fingerprints).
Many of his cases involve connected cases in the civil courts and/or in other jurisdictions, dealing for instance with the tracing and freezing of assets in countries such as Liechtenstein and Switzerland. He also deals regularly with domestic proceedings for cash forfeiture, confiscation and restraint under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002.
John is also an author and editor, and has given interviews on legal topics to national press and on radio. He has written on disclosure and carousel fraud for the New Law Journal and on the Company Directors Disqualification Act for Director of Finance Online. He has provided substantial contributions to the Police Station Adviser’s Index and OUP’s Money Laundering Law and Regulation: A Practical Guide, and coordinated or contributed to responses to various government consultations.
John studied LLB Law at King’s College London and MPhil Criminology at Cambridge before qualifying as a solicitor in October 2000. He joined BCL in January 2010, before which he worked for a leading criminal/regulatory defence firm of solicitors; before that, he was an in-house lawyer and policy adviser to the Legal Services Commission.