BCL top ranked in 2020 Chambers and Partners UK Guide

BCL Solicitors LLP has once more been top tier ranked by Chambers & Partners in the 2020 edition of Chambers UK – a Client’s Guide to the UK Legal Profession.  This is one of the leading independent directories of UK legal services, identifying the leading firms and lawyers in the UK.

BCL has been ranked as a top tier / leading firm in the following practice areas:

  • Financial Crime: Individuals (London)
  • Financial Crime: Corporates (London)
  • Crime (London)
  • Crime: Extradition (London)
  • POCA Work & Asset Forfeiture (UK-wide)
  • Tax: Contentious: Fraud (UK-wide)

Chambers UK’s rankings and editorial for each practice area are set out below.

Financial Crime: Individuals

BCL is ranked as a top tier firm in Financial Crime: Individuals.  We have seven partners ranked in this practice area, including three top-ranked. Those ranked are as follows:

  • Ian Burton – Band 1
  • Harry Travers – Band 1
  • Richard Sallybanks – Band 1
  • Jane Glass – Band 2
  • Michael Drury – Band 3
  • Shula de Jersey – Band 3
  • Shaul Brazil – Band 4

In relation to the firm’s position, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
A premier outfit with an excellent reputation for its representation of individuals including company directors, officers and employees. Boutique firm offering a large team with extensive experience in handling high-profile SFO investigations. Frequently advises on complex commercial fraud, regulatory enforcement and money laundering cases. Also demonstrates a strong capability in handling cartel investigations. Adept at dealing with extradition matters related to financial crime investigations.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
“I’m always impressed by BCL,” agrees another source, explaining: “They’re recommended across the board. They’ve always been first-rate.”

“They have a huge depth of experience of taking cases to trial. If you’re an individual charged with fraud, they’re one of the top firms to go to,”

In relation to the ranked partners, Chambers UK states:

Ian Burton has unrivalled strategic judgement and experience. He is internationally recognised as the pre-eminent adviser in high-profile criminal representation. Sources note that he has “a huge and well-deserved reputation as the leading figure for high-profile criminal representation. He is a deep strategic thinker and has an unbelievable depth of experience.”

Jane Glass demonstrates considerable experience representing clients in FCA and SFO investigations. “Her clients love her and they know that they can depend on her tireless commitment to their cause,”

Harry Travers is highly respected for his representation of clients facing allegations of corruption, bribery and fraud.  Market insider, explains: “He’s ferociously clever, he’s committed and he’s versatile.” 

Shula de Jersey  is regularly called upon to represent clients in SFO investigations into allegations of bribery and corruption. One market insider comments that “she’s the rare commodity of a really well-schooled, thoroughly knowledgeable, knows-her-instincts criminal solicitor.”

 Richard Sallybanks offers a wealth of expertise acting for clients in high-profile criminal investigations. Client reports: “He’s thoughtful, exceptionally intelligent and he has a forensic eye for detail without losing the bigger picture,”

Michael Drury frequently represents clients in high-profile criminal investigations with cross-border elements. “He has that sense of being a real heavyweight,” comments a source, explaining that “his expertise in intelligence matters and the crossover with fraud and corruption is unmatched.”

Shaul Brazil wins praise for his representation of individuals facing a variety of allegations, including bribery, corruption and money laundering. “He is on top of the details in a way that is really quite astonishing,” says an interviewee, adding: “He always thinks outside of the box, which makes people think of him as one of the leading future stars of the profession.”

Financial Crime: Corporates

BCL is ranked as a leading firm for this practice area.

In relation to the firm, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
Well-established practice that provides deep expertise in the business crime area. Offers tailored specialist advice to corporates affected by search warrants, allegations of money laundering and SFO investigations.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
“They’re outstandingly good in the way they have dealt with arising issues,”

“They are fantastic and they have genuinely been incredibly good at managing difficult problems. They’re very forensic in their approach and they’re very good at problem-solving.” 

Crime

BCL is top-ranked for this practice area with four partners and an associate appearing in the rankings as follows:

  • Mark Haslam – Band 1
  • Paul Morris – Band 1
  • Rachel Hubbard – Band 3
  • Ellen Peart – Band 2
  • David Hardstaff – Associates to watch

In relation to the firm, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
Outstanding firm specialising in the defence of high-profile private clients. Strong bench of top-flight individuals experienced in handling highly complex cases, including those involving notable personalities from the sports and entertainment worlds. Also offers expert representation to professionals in the medical, business and political spheres. 

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
“[BCL offers] “diligence and astute preparation” during complex cases. Sources commend the “brilliant crime team,” saying that it can provide a “comprehensive service for serious criminal matters.”

In relation to the ranked partners, Chambers UK states:

Mark Haslam is is a leading criminal defence practitioner who regularly represents well-known sports professionals along with other prominent individuals.  Sources consider him to be a “very good advocate” who is “very charismatic and engaging” as well as being “very down to earth” with clients.

Rachel Hubbard has broad experience in criminal defence matters, including those that relate to violent and sexual offences. She regularly represents high-profile professionals and well-known media personalities facing serious allegations, as well as advising individuals who have been called as witnesses in criminal cases.

Paul Morris is head of the firm’s serious and general crime department. He provides expert representation to high-profile individuals, including those in the entertainment industry, on a range of serious criminal cases. Interviewees describe him as a “masterful solicitor” who is “incredibly intelligent and just as personable.”

Ellen Peart is “no-nonsense and immensely dedicated” criminal defence specialist, with particular expertise in handling serious sexual offence cases. A source praises her “absolute professionalism, client care and choice of counsel,” and also adds: “Her tactical judgement, from police station interview to trial, is breathtaking.”

Crime: Extradition

BCL is ranked as a leading firm for this practice area with two partners and an associate appearing in the rankings as follows:

  • Shaul Brazil – Band 3
  • Michael Drury – Band 3
  • Kate Chanter – Associates to watch

In relation to the firm, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
Highly experienced team noted for its representation of high-profile individuals in complex cases. Specialist expertise in politically sensitive matters, frequently acting on proceedings involving multiple jurisdictions, asset freezing and Interpol red notices.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
 “very high-quality and very hard-working.” ; “My experience working with the firm was very positive – the team was incredibly collaborative and very responsive.”

In relation to our individuals, Chambers UK states:

Shaul Brazil frequently represents high-profile individuals facing extradition in relation to serious criminal charges, including fraud, money laundering and drugs trafficking. According to one source, “he is always on the ball – his ability to hold everything together with complete control during complex proceedings is really excellent.”

Michael Drury is a “real class act” whose extradition expertise extends across multiple jurisdictions including Turkey, Russia and the USA. He has particular expertise in cases with high-level political and national security implications. Sources praise him as a “wonderful, talented practitioner” who provides “really brilliant analysis.”

A skilled litigator and advocate,  Kate Chanter regularly assists clients with extradition requests, European Arrest Warrants and Interpol Red Notices. She has particular experience handling cases involving Russia.

POCA Work & Asset Forfeiture

BCL is ranked as a top-tier firm with three partners appearing in the rankings as follows:

  • Richard Sallybanks – Band 1
  • Shaul Brazil – Band 3
  • John Binns – Band 3

In relation to the firm, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
Market-leading defence practice handling the full spectrum of POCA and asset forfeiture matters. Frequently assists high-profile individuals and corporate clients with anti-money laundering compliance as well as representing them in investigations
and pre- and post-conviction litigation.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
A source notes: “They are very focused on strategy and they’re strong at going into legal arguments in depth.”

A market commentator lauds the firm as “impressive” and appreciates that it is “a sophisticated outfit that looks after its clients and makes sure nothing is missed.”

In relation to the ranked partners, Chambers UK states:

Sources laud  Richard Sallybanks as one of the great all-rounders” and testify to his impressive track record of POCA work. He offers a wealth of experience in restraint and confiscation orders arising from criminal investigations for money laundering, corruption and fraud. 

Shaul Brazil is described as “dynamic, hard-working and personable with the ability to provide timely and accurate advice.” He has experience in handling complex multi-jurisdictional matters such as civil recovery proceedings, investigations for money laundering and regulatory enforcement matters. A source states: “He is extremely tenacious and clearly cares a lot about his clients, who feel they have a fighter in their corner.”

John Binns is described as “detail-focused, approachable and tenacious,” and is also praised for being “particularly good at difficult international POCA work.”

Tax: Contentious: Fraud

BCL is again top-ranked for this practice area with partner Harry Travers ranked in Band 1 and Greg Mailer as an Associate to watch.

In relation to the firm, Chambers UK states:

What the team is known for:
Pre-eminent business crime practice well known for defending clients against significant tax fraud allegations. Possesses an outstanding track record of defending clients facing HMRC investigations.

Strengths (Quotes mainly from clients):
“[BCL has] “a high-calibre organisation which rightfully has a terrific reputation in the marketplace,” adding that “they are a top-class firm.”

In relation to Harry Travers, Chambers UK states:

Harry Travers combines his exceptional expertise in white-collar crime cases with his long-standing experience advising individuals on tax investigations. Sources observe that “he’s incredibly knowledgeable,” adding that “strategically he leaves no stone unturned.

Sources describe Greg Mailer as fantastic” and single out his sensible solutions to difficult problems.He assists clients with a variety of HMRC investigations including Code of Practice 9 cases.

Health & Safety

Partner Guy Bastable is top-ranked in relation to Health and Safety.

In relation to Guy Bastable, Chambers UK states:

Guy Bastable has a fantastic profile in the regulatory world and is more on top of legal developments than most,” reports a source. He has widely acknowledged experience in dealing with criminal investigations and prosecutions, as well as internal health and safety procedures. Clients report that he “demonstrates attention to detail, and strategic and tactical thinking.”

If you wish to read the full BCL Solicitors’ profile please visit the Chambers and Partners website here.