On 11 October 2017, The Legal 500 2017 Clients’ Guide to the UK Legal Profession was published. This is one of the leading independent directories of UK legal services, in which the UK’s leading firms and lawyers are identified.
In the 2017 edition, BCL is recommended as either a top-tier or leading firm in the following practice areas:
- Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime
- Fraud: White-Collar Crime
- Crime: General
- Health & Safety
- Administrative & Public Law
In terms of individual lawyers, the following seven BCL partners are included in the elite ‘Leading Lawyers’ list which is The Legal 500’s guide to outstanding lawyers nationwide:
- Ian Burton – Fraud: White-Collar Crime (also recommended in Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime)
- Richard Sallybanks – Fraud: White-Collar Crime (also recommended in Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime and Administrative & Public Law)
- Harry Travers – Fraud: White-Collar Crime
- Guy Bastable – Health & Safety (also recommended in Administrative & Public Law)
- Paul Morris – Crime: General
- Ellen Peart – Crime: General
- Rachel Hubbard – Crime: General
The Legal 500 also recommends the following BCL partners and lawyers:
- Shaul Brazil – Fraud: White-Collar Crime
- Richard Reichman – Health & Safety
- Michael Drury – Administrative & Public Law
- Robin Booth – Administrative & Public Law
In addition John Binns and Julian Hayes, who were both admitted to BCL’s partnership in 2017, have been included by The Legal 500 in their ‘Next Generation Lawyers’ list in respect of Fraud: White-Collar Crime.
The Legal 500’s editorial for each practice area in relation to BCL is set out below:
Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime
BCL Solicitors LLP is ‘a class act, with a proven track record of success and a phenomenal level of associate support’. It is ‘able to offer unrivalled experience in commercial litigation earned over several decades’, and is ‘a firm to whom any business person would be well advised to turn in times of regulatory trouble’. The team acts for both corporates and individuals, advising on all matters of alleged criminality including bribery, corruption, cartel activity and sanctions compliance. Practice head Ian Burton is ‘a superstar who has experience in every kind of case imaginable’, and Richard Sallybanks has notable expertise in SFO investigations.
Fraud: White-Collar Crime
BCL Solicitors LLP has ‘a well-deserved reputation for being at the cutting edge of white-collar defence work’, and ‘has a huge amount of experience in high-profile cases, where the team fights tooth and nail for its clients’. The firm advises on all areas of fraud, business and white-collar crime, acting for a range of individuals including directors, senior employees and high-net-worth individuals. The ‘intelligent, imaginative and dedicated’ Ian Burton heads the practice, where key figures also include the ‘hugely personable and sympathetic’ Richard Sallybanks; Harry Travers, who is ‘uniquely placed to navigate the technical and tactical aspects of civil and criminal investigations’; and Shaul Brazil, a ‘staunch defender of his clients who has a clever tactical eye’.
‘Market leader’ BCL Solicitors LLP is ‘the preeminent firm for crime-related matters’, handling ‘countless high-profile cases and clients, all of which illustrate the firm’s position in the market’. The team of ‘top tier lawyers’ is ‘straightforward to deal with, and is very responsive to out-of-hours calls for clients in urgent need of advice’. Practice head Paul Morris ‘commands great respect and admiration, and is undoubtedly a solicitor you want on your side’. Ellen Peart is ‘an enormous asset to have at the police station’, and Rachel Hubbard has ‘unrivalled experience in general crime’. The firm has represented numerous high-profile individuals including Sir Cliff Richard and Jeremy Clarkson.
Health & Safety
The ‘responsive, commercial and reliable’ team at BCL Solicitors LLP is ‘a strong practice for corporates and directors facing personal investigations or prosecution for health and safety offences’. Department head Guy Bastable, who has ‘good technical knowledge, great tactical awareness and excellent judgement’, specialises in handling corporate manslaughter matters. The team includes senior associate Richard Reichman, who has extensive experience representing companies and individuals in criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as environmental, fire safety and food safety prosecutions.
Administrative & Public Law
BCL Solicitors LLP’s ‘judgement of where public law and criminal law should be asked to intersect, and where it should not, is second to none’, according to one client. Its ‘first-rate’ practice is ‘excellent’ in public inquiries and investigations conducted by the FCA, Serious Fraud Office and the Competition and Markets Authority, among other work. Recent mandates for the practice included judicial reviews, internal investigations and inquests. Richard Sallybanks is ‘great’, general counsel Robin Booth is ‘a formidable detail man’ and Michael Drury and Guy Bastable are deeply experienced.