Ben Thomas

Ben Thomas secures acquittal in Conspiracy to Commit Fraud trial
Year of call:

2010

Education:

2008 - University of York, BA (Hons) History

2009 - College of Law, PgDip Law

2010 - College of Law, BVC ('outstanding')

Career:

2011 - Pupil of Gill Batts at New Park Court Chambers, Leeds

2012 - Tenant at New Park Court Chambers, Leeds

2015 - Tenant at Park Square Barristers, Leeds

2016 - CPS Level-3 prosecutor

Appointments:

2019 - List C of the Panel of Specialist Regulatory Advocates

Memberships:

North Eastern Circuit Criminal Bar Association Proceeds of Crime Lawyers Association Liberty

Awards:

2008 - Middle Temple, The Benefactors Scholarship

2009 - Middle Temple, Rose Scholarship

2010 - Middle Temple, The Baron Van Der Heyden De Lancey Prize Middle Temple, Certificate of Honour

Ben predominantly practises in criminal law but is also regularly instructed in regulatory matters, especially those with a criminal element.

He is a CPS Grade Three Prosecutor with a strong defence practice. He has experience of undertaking work as junior alone and as led junior for both the Defence and Prosecution.

In crime, his practice encompasses the full range of criminal law, including sexual offences, serious violent offences, firearms and drug trafficking. He has a particular expertise in complex and paper heavy fraud work and is regularly instructed in such matters. Having been instructed as prosecution junior in a series of paper heavy mortgage frauds he has considerable experience in dealing with disclosure of unused material and Section 8 applications and has a particular interest in defending such cases. Ben also has a strong interest in human rights and civil liberties and has successfully defended in prosecutions brought following demonstration and protests.

Ben is happy to accept instructions from all over the country and has appeared in courts across the whole of England and Wales. He always advises in writing on receipt of instructions and throughout the proceedings. He is happy to travel to attend for conferences at convenient locations for clients.

Contact Ben’s clerks

Crime

Andrew Thornton on 0113 213 5202

Gina Hawkins on 0113 213 5205

Rebecca Wilson on 0113 213 5203

Hannah Dempsey on 0113 213 5211

Elaine Foster-Morgan on 0113 213 5217

Robyn Nichol on 0113 213 5253

Regulatory

Madeleine Gray on 0113 202 8603

Patrick Urbina on 0113 213 5250

Ben has a strong practice in all areas of criminal law. He has s successful and busy defence practice and is also a CPS Level Three Prosecutor. He has appeared as a led junior for both the prosecution and the defence in the full range of criminal work. He has experience of conducting paperless trials and presenting cases to juries electronically.

His practice encompasses the full range of criminal law, including sexual offences, serious violent offences, firearms and drug trafficking. He has a particular expertise in complex and paper heavy fraud work and is regularly instructed in such matters. Having been previously instructed as prosecution junior in a series of paper heavy mortgage frauds he has considerable experience in dealing with disclosure of unused material, Section 8 applications and issues regarding PII and intelligence. He therefore has a particular interest in defending in such cases. Ben also has a strong interest in human rights and civil liberties and has successfully defended in prosecutions brought following demonstration and protests.

Ben has also appeared before the Court Martial in respect of defence of service personal and is happy to travel in the United Kingdom and abroad in respect of such proceedings.

Ben is experienced in defending applications under the Proceeds of Crime Act He has been instructed to represent Defendants and interveners in the Crown Court solely in respect of Proceeds of Crime Act applications.  He has experience of dealing with applications to vary restraint orders, receivership applications, applications to vary confiscation orders and enforcement proceedings.

Ben is happy to accept instructions from all over the country and has appeared in courts across the whole of England and Wales. He always advises in writing on receipt of instructions and throughout the proceedings. He is happy to travel to attend for conferences at convenient locations for clients.

Notable cases

  • R v Green, Beech and Playforth (February 2020)- Led Junior for the Prosecution in three handed joint enterprise manslaughter.  The case involved consideration of football intelligence material, self-defence and participation in a joint enterprise.  All three Defendants convicted.
    • https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-51962051
  • R v TL (November 2019)- Successful Defence in Armed Home Invasion Robbery where the Defendant had previous convictions for robbery and aggravated burglary, which the prosecution successfully put before the jury.
  • R v Hargreaves (October 2019)- Defence of man who made threats to various employees of the BBC and Lewis Hamilton.
    • https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7580933/Far-right-extremist-jailed-18-months-threatened-kill-BBC-broadcasters.html
  • R v SM (September 2019)- Successful Defence of a young woman of good character, accused of taking part in a group street robbery with weapons. The Defence involved blaming her two co-defendants, who were convicted.
  • R v GP (January 2019)- Successful Defence of allegations of Possession with Intent to Supply Class A Drugs when the Defendant’s previous convictions for Class A drug dealing had gone before the jury.
  • R v JH (December 2018)- Defence of an Army SNCO at a Court Martial in relation to offences alleged to have occurred at Mess Function. Defendant was acquitted of offences of both GBH and ABH after trial.
  • R v Amin, Arapaj and Butlin (November 2018)- Junior for the prosecution arising out of a fatal shooting by the police on the M62 in January 2017
    • https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-leeds-46544795
  • R v Ahmed, Khan and Cotter (July 2018)- Successful prosecution of County Lines drugs operation. This case rested on interpretation of phone evidence and drugs expert evidence.
  • R v Spedding [2018] EWCA Crim 1937; [2019] 1 Cr. App. R. (S.) 3 (July 2018) Appeal against sentence where the Court of Appeal overturned both the finding of dangerousness and reduced the sentence.
  • R v Arthur Wilder (June 2018) Successful Prosecution of Defendant in a £1 Million mortgage fraud.
    • https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/news/hull-east-yorkshire-news/ex-hull-nightclub-boss-luxury-1690800
  • R v Findlay Windas and Others (March 2018)- Led Junior in the successful multi handed prosecution for Conspiracy to Supply Drugs and Prohibited Weapons. Following conviction and sentence, Ben received extremely positive feedback from both the CPS and the Police.
    • https://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/news/gangster-liam-windas-convicted-selling-1508413
  • R v PL (November 2017)- Represented Defendant accused of serious sexual offences against his daughter. The Defendant was already serving an extended sentence for similar offences against another family member. Case was further complicated by some of the offending having taken place when the family lived in Scotland.
  • R v GH (August 2017)- Successful defence of historic allegations of rape alleged to have occurred in 1976 when the defendant was 16 years old.
  • R v Hammed (June 2017) Successful prosecution of a sham marriage immigration fraud. This case involved significant evidence being given by video link from Pakistan.
  • R v Malkeet Singh Rathod (February 2017) Led Junior for the main defendant in industrial scale immigration fraud involving widespread abuse of the sponsor licence scheme. Acted alone in respect of the confiscation proceedings.
    • http://www.thetelegraphandargus.co.uk/news/15359422.Shopkeeper_banked___500_000_by_duping_Home_Office_into_allowing_188_migrants_into_UK_illegally/
  • R v RW (December 2016) Successful defence of woman of good character accused of theft of £30 000 worth of stock from her former employer over a significant period of time.
  • R v JN (November 2016) Successful defence of man of good character accused of handling stolen lorries valued at £150 000.
  • R v SW (September 2016) Successful submission of no case to answer in respect of alleged joint enterprise Section 18 offence, based on the principles in R v Jogee [2016] UK SC 8; [2017] A.C. 387
  • R v JB (February 2016)- Successful defence in a £350 000 conspiracy to fraudulently obtain meat from suppliers across the United Kingdom and Eire.
  • R v David Purdie and others (September 2015) Led Junior Counsel for the Prosecution in an eight handed £200 000 000+ mortgage fraud. The case attracted considerable media interest:
    • http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/gang-plotted-massive-300m-buy-6648627
  • R v KS (August 2015)- Defence of woman accused of perverting the course of justice over alleged false allegation of sexual assault against a police officer. Advised as to the obtaining of a psychiatric report regarding the issue of intent. Following service of that report the Prosecution offered no evidence.
  • R v AS (September 2014) Defence of a sales manager accused of fraud against his former employer. Successful application made to stay the indictment as an abuse of process as a result of significant prosecution disclosure failures.

Contact Ben’s clerks

Andrew Thornton on 0113 213 5202

Gina Hawkins on 0113 213 5205

Rebecca Wilson on 0113 213 5203

Hannah Dempsey on 0113 213 5211

Elaine Foster-Morgan on 0113 213 5217

Robyn Nichol on 0113 213 5253

 

Ben Thomas is a C-List Specialist Regulatory Advocate.

Ben has considerable experience of prosecuting regulatory offences on behalf of local authorities for the full range of regulatory offences including health and safety act offences, unauthorised demolition, breach of hygiene improvement notices and breach of enforcement notices. He has represented local authorities in relation to appeals against abatement notices.  He is currently instructed to advise in respect of a potential prosecution under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 which arises out of a fatal accident. He also has experience of taxi licensing appeals for both Appellants and the Respondent. He is regularly asked to advice in relation to new legislation and regulations.  He is always happy to assist with advice, whether in writing or in conference

Ben has represented Defendants prosecuted by the Environment Agency and by the local authorities for offences relating to waste disposal and breaches of tree preservation orders. He has also prosecuted cases on behalf of DEFRA and successfully defended in prosecutions bought by rail companies.  Ben has been instructed to defend in applications brought by the police for Gang Related Violence Injunctions and also has experience of representing defendant’s facing committal to prison for breach of these injunctions. He has considerable experience in defending applications for forfeiture of cash under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and applications under the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979. He has also appeared at parole board hearings

Ben has been instructed as independent counsel in relation to reviewing material and advising in respect of Legal Professional Privilege for both the Police and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs.

Notable cases

  • Craven District Council v Bizzie Lizzies Restaurants (January 2020)- Successful prosecution of a fish and chip shop for offences under the Health and Safety at Work Act resulting from an accident causing significant injuries to a staff member.
  • Derby City Council v Good Mood Food (November 2019)- Defence of restaurant for breaches of food hygiene regulations.
  • CSG v Craven District Council (December 2018) On going appeal regarding abatement notice,
  • KR v Kirklees Council (February 2018) Appeal against the revocation of an alcohol licence.
  • Nasir Ali v Craven District Council (November 2017) Successfully resisted the appeal against the revocation of a taxi licence in respect of a driver who had been alleged to have committed a sexual assault on a passenger. The appeal was dismissed, and the revocation upheld notwithstanding the decision of the police not to charge.
    • https://www.cravendc.gov.uk/news/news-archive-folder/november-2017/craven-district-council-wins-court-case-against-taxi-driver/
  • Kirklees Council v JGC (Ltd) (July 2017) Defence of land agents for breach of a Tree Preservation Order.
  • Craven District Council v David Eckersall (January 2017) Successful prosecution for the demolition of a Grade II listed building. This case attracted significant media interest
    • http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4094628/It-just-pile-stones-Couple-say-neighbour-waited-away-demolished-Grade-II-listed-cottage-leave-no-roof-sewage-leaking-home.html
  • The Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police v LC (January 2014) Represented a Defendant in an application brought by the police for a Gang Related Violence Injunction. Successfully argued that any application should be stayed pending the Defendant’s on-going criminal proceedings and that an interim injunction was unnecessary in the circumstances
  • The Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police v PM (January 2012) Successful defence in cash forfeiture proceedings.

Contact Ben’s clerk

Madeleine Gray on 0113 202 8603

Patrick Urbina on 0113 213 5250