jonathan underhill BW

Jonathan Underhill

Year of Call: 2008
Email Address:
Telephone: 01202 292 102 / 020 7583 8055

Download Expertise CV Add Expertise to Shortlist

How to use the Shortlist tool?

Public and Regulatory

Jonathan believes that particular time and care should be taken in the conduct of cases which,  whilst still being dealt with by the Criminal Courts – both Magistrates and Crown Court, encompass areas of fact and law which are less commonly seen there. Regulatory prosecution is a real and present risk for small and medium sized businesses who are often without their own internal compliance or legal departments. Engaging the appropriate expertise and skill in such cases, from the earliest possible point, is essential to achieve the best outcome.

Jonathan is regularly instructed to prosecute all types of Regulatory Crime by Trading Standards Departments, Local Authorities and Police Authorities. This detailed knowledge and expertise is invaluable in his robust defence of private individuals and companies; most notably where such cases fall outside of traditional criminal practice.

In addition, he has extensive experience in confiscation proceedings pursuant to the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and is a member of the CPS Specialist Proceeds of Crime advocates panel. As a result, he is able to provide a complete service to clients from pre-charging advice, through trial, to confiscation proceedings. This is particularly important for Trading Standards and Local Authorities as well as private clients who can benefit from complete advice from the outset of their case.

Jonathan’s Trading Standards and regulatory practice includes, but is not limited to:

  • Offences under the Fraud Act 2006
  • The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 (and associated Regulations)
  • The Consumer Protection Act 1987
  • The Trade Marks Act 1994
  • The Food Safety Act 1990.

Jonathan's prosecution and enforcement practice has particular emphasis on all aspects of Local Authority prosecutions and enforcement and covers all areas of Local Authority work including Right to Buy fraud, tenancy fraud, planning enforcement, fly tipping, noise abatement, animal regulations and anti-social behaviour.

Jonathan is also instructed to conduct hearings for private clients and via Legal Expenses insurance in all areas subject to Local Authority Licensing including the licensing of hackney carriages, private hire vehicles and liquor licensing. His experience extends from conducting review hearings before licensing sub-committees to appeals and trials before the Magistrates’ and Crown Courts.

Notable Cases

Trading Standards

R v C Ltd (2020) – instructed for the Defence in Electrical Products (Safety) Regulation 2016 involving counterfeit apple products.

R v B (2019) – Instructed to prosecute “Rogue Plumber” under Fraud Act 2006 and CPUTR 2008. Case involved multiple victims over a long time.

PCC v. K (2018) – Long term parking fraud concerning fraudulent parking permits and mis-use of “blue badges”.

HB v. MK (2018) – Multiple outlet breach of smoking ban prosecution – legal argument as to proper application of statute.

Operation ‘Foxchase’ – Instructed as led Junior in a complex national secondary ticketing trading standards case.

Operation ‘Hugo’ – Trading Standards case involving importation of farmed puppies, featured on BBC programming.

Operation ‘Wendelin’ – Multi handed Trading standards prosecution of rouge traders involving 15 complainants.

PCC v. A and Ors – Multi handed Parking Fraud Prosecution involving fraudulent use of Parking Permits by police employees.

R v. S – Trading Standards prosecution against persistent street peddler.

Trade Marks

R v CL (2020/2021) – Instructed for the Defence in International importation of tobacco in breach of trademark conspiracy case. Case is privately prosecuted by the Japanese Tobacco Corp.

R v C (2019) – Multi Defendant Trademarks Act offences – large sale importation on Isle of Wight.

R v. M – Trading standard prosecution involving Trademark offences against the Premier League, British Legion and Help for Heroes – including issues of international production and importation.

R v. A – Trading standards Prosecution involving several thousand pounds of counterfeit tobacco.

Environmental, Housing and Planning

R v C (2020) – Instructed for the Defence in Fly Tipping case brough by a the Local Authority – called upon to assist in drafting evidential representation which led to the case being dropped as no longer being evidentially sustainable , or in the public interest.

LBH v E (2019) – Instructed for the Prosecution – Persistent and serious breach of HMO involving a challenging litigant in personal and multi-day magistrates court trial.

HB v. M and A (2019) – Advertising and Planning enforcement Appeal against conviction and sentence – instructed for the Crown – complete rehearing required – appeal dismissed with full costs awarded to the Crown.

HB v. A (2018/19) – Multi-Property Planning Enforcement and Environmental Breach Prosecution, leading to PoCA application valued at circ. £300,000.

HB v. T (2018) – Multi Defendant Fly-Tipping Prosecution against both individuals and limited companies.

HB v. A (2018) – Multi Defendant, Multiple breaches of Improvement notices over significant periods of time effecting multiple tenants and requiring Local Authority involvement.

R(SCC) v. C and Ors – High Court case stated flowing from a LA noise abatement prosecution – successfully defeated an application for wasted costs against the Local Authority running to approx. £80,000

Food and Hygiene

R v EH Ltd (2019) – Instruction for the Defence to provide advice and representation concerning Food Condemnation Proceedings, Novel Food Regulations and their applicability to SARM following the National Food Crime Units classification of such as a Novel Food for the purposes of enforcement.

LBH v. K (2018) – Persistent and escalating breach of environmental legislation pertaining to fast food and animal waste in central London.

R v. X (2017) – Instructed for the Defence in food hygiene case involving breaches of European and Domestic regulation.

R(BDBC) v. FF and Ors – Multi handed Food safety case involving multiple breaches of Regulatory provisions, hygiene improvement and prohibition orders.

Animal Welfare

HCC v R and R (2019/ 2020) – Instructed for the Defence in relation to Animal Welfare and Pets Licencing– including dealing with and reducing a confiscation order originally sought by the Prosecution in the sum of £1.3 Million.

DCC v G (2019) – Instructed for the Prosecution on Dangerous Dogs matter, requiring detailed evidential analysis of multiple accounts, and a full consideration of the test of evidential sufficiency under the Code for Crown Prosecutors.

HTS v G (2018) – Instructed for prosecution dealing with sentencing and application for Animal Deprivation and Disqualification Orders under the Animal Welfare Act 2006 relating to two large farms with cross species orders consideration of conflicting veterinary evidence.

  • Publications
    • 21st Jul 2020

      Enforcing the Novel Food regime - Part 1: Overview and Rationale
      In the first of a short series of bite size articles, Jonathan Underhill takes a deeper look into the enforcement of the Novel Food regime and seeks to identify and breakdown the powers made available to those agencies, who are tasked with securing compliance.

      View Publication
    • 15th Apr 2020

      What are the new Enforcement and Prosecution Powers of Local Authorities and their effect on Business under the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions (England) Regulations 2020?

      View Publication
  • Recommendations

    “I would not hesitate in instructing Mr Jonathan Underhill in all manner of Regulatory matters. He has an almost encyclopaedic knowledge in all key regulatory areas, including Environmental, Licensing, Housing and Planning offences.  His preparation is meticulous with close attention to detail. He is extremely approachable and is great at communicating to a wide range of clients, which has always led to positive feedback and requests to instruct him in future matters. He has an amazing ability to advocate complex issues in law, in a way that is easy to understand for Magistrates, Jurors and Judges. His Advocacy is simply exceptional. He is and will continue to be my first choice of Counsel.”
    C Smith – Criminal Litigation Lawyer (London Local Authority)

    “I am indebted to Mr Jonathan Underhill…for his realistic and concise submissions… Mr Underhill was utterly realistic in his submissions to this court, which he advanced with commendable brevity and good sense”.
    HHJ Jeremy Richardson QC – In the High Court

    “I was very impressed with Jonathan Underhill – and he had a glowing report from our environmental health manager for his advocacy at the recent noise trial he did for us”.
    Local Authority Solicitor

    “I would not hesitate in instructing Mr Underhill – cases are always thoroughly prepared, time and care taken with clients and outcomes reported back promptly. The client feedback has been excellent and often accompanies with a request that he represent them again. The quality of his representation is first class.”
    Lindsey Taylor (Solicitor) - Watkins and Gunn Solicitors

    “I have found Mr Underhill to be an excellent advocate who is always well prepared and courteous to all. I have had positive feedback from clients in cases he had conducted on my firm’s behalf. I would not hesitate to instruct him.”
    Paul Lewis (Partner) - Quality Solicitors HPJV

    "Very clearly presented - a dry subject made interesting. Very useful info. Excellent trainer".
    Nikki Hutt, West Sussex County Council

    "Very informative, clear, concise but with a level of relaxed delivery and humour. I enjoyed Jonathan's 'style'."
    Dee Plum, West Sussex County Council

    “I was very impressed with Jonathan Underhill and he had a glowing report from our environmental health manager for his advocacy at the recent noise trial he did for us.”
    Local Authority Solicitor

  • Expand recommendations
View Full CV

Academic qualifications

  • BVC (Graded Outstanding) – Cardiff University Law School
  • Inner Temple Prize Winner – Outstanding Achievement
  • LLB (Hons) Law & Politics – Cardiff University Law School

Professional qualifications & appointments

  • Level 3 – CPS Panel Advocate
  • Level 2 – CPS Specialist Panel Advocate – Proceeds of Crime Panel
  • Level 3 – Specialist Panel Advocate – Fraud
  • Serious Fraud Office Review Panel

Professional bodies

  • Western Circuit
  • Criminal Bar Association
  • Fraud Lawyers Association
  • Proceeds of Crime Lawyers Association
  • Private Prosecutors Association