Neil Matthews is an eloquent, persuasive and determined advocate practising in criminal, public and civil law. He has experience of defending and prosecuting in criminal, regulatory and extradition cases. He has acted for clients in the Crown Court, Courts Martial Magistrates’ Court, County Court, Social Services Tribunal and Employment Tribunal. He is regularly instructed across a broad range of matters including violence, drugs, and financial crime.
Neil is a specialist in information law, information governance and the assurance that information systems comply with relevant regulatory frameworks. Neil also has a long term interest in environmental law. He has particular expertise in the analysis and examination of very large evidential data sets including telephone evidence, (geolocation and usage patterns) and financial evidence. As a former company director, Neil has an instinctive grasp of the commercial aspects of cases involving business and finance.
Prior to coming to the Bar, Neil, founded a successful consultancy business and was selected to work in the legal division of Goldman Sachs after a highly competitive selection procedure. He is often described as unflappable, and able to remain calm in exacting circumstances.
Neil has been described as “a rising star advocate.”
Neil plays rugby regularly and is able (on occasion) to dazzle on the pitch despite his seniority in years. He enjoys cycling and triathlon, and has raised money for charity following these pursuits including while cycling from Lands End to John O’Groats.
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Neil Matthews is a highly successful criminal defence and prosecution barrister. Neil has experience of defending and prosecuting in criminal, regulatory and extradition cases. He has acted for clients in the Crown Court, Courts Martial, County Court and Magistrates’ Court.
R v A: Persuaded the Crown to offer no evidence in a large-scale county lines drug dealing case, following the successful application of the National Referral Mechanism under the Modern Slavery regime. Not guilty verdicts were entered. Lewes Crown Court.
R v B: Led junior in multi-million pound, multi defendant fraud trial. Over 200,000 pages of prosecution evidence. Exhaustive analysis of prosecution material including phone evidence, cell site and financial records. Neil led on the analysis of telephone material with the assistance of two telecommunications experts. Southwark Crown Court.
R v E and others: Acting for the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority) in a complex, large scale and long running investigation into abuse of the stock market.
R v G: Multi defendant case involving the smuggling of people into the UK. Canterbury Crown Court.
R v N: Successfully defended in a supply of Class A drugs case. Exhaustively prepared cross examination of Police officers and expert witness combined with a detailed analysis of evidence led to the acquittal. Guildford Crown Court.
R v M : Defended client against allegation of sexual assault. Precision cross examination of complainant and forensic analysis of evidence secured a not guilty verdict. Bulford Courts Martial.
R v K: Defended client in a case of dangerous driving where a Police officer was injured. Following the cross examination of 5 Police officers, the Crown’s case was in disarray. A successful submission of no case to answer secured the client’s acquittal. Snaresbrook Crown Court.
R v Z: Child cruelty. Complex case involving varied evidence and cross examination of vulnerable and expert witnesses. Harrow Crown Court.
R v N: Fraud and theft. The Prosecution case involved 40,000+ pages of evidence, including telephone evidence, geo-location and financial documents. Luton Crown Court.
R v O: Defended client at trial. Allegation of possession of bladed article, 3 x assault. Defendant acquitted. Isleworth Crwon Court.
R v W: clients was accused of possession of a bladed article and assault on the allegation of his ex partner and her new partner. Rigorously prepared cross examination shone a light on the inconsistencies between the different accounts. Not Guilty. Isleworth Crown Court.
R v O: Importation of drugs to Prison. Prosecution persuaded to offer no evidence. Not guilty. Blackfriars Crown Court.
R v D: Possession with intent to supply (Class A). Prosecution persuaded to offer no evidence. Wood Green Crown Court.
R v S: Theft. Crown persuaded to offer no evidence. Sentenced for other matter of theft. Immediate release secured. Southampton Crown Court.
R v M: Trial – Threats to Kill. Issues of fitness to plead. Southwark Crown Court.
R v T: Disclosure application – Appeared at the Central Criminal Court on three occasions for this case. Made applications that the learned Judge should order the Crown to disclose 4 pieces of evidence. My submissions persuaded the Judge to order the disclosure and prosecution counsel to review the CRIS. At a subsequent hearing, counsel for the prosecution accepted that despite the CPS position there was clearly material in the CRIS which should be disclosed. Other disclosure issues had been resolved by Police investigations directed by the Court. Crown persuaded to offer no evidence at later hearing. Central Criminal Court.
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Criminal/regulatory barrister Neil Matthews has a longstanding practice in defending people for alleged driving offences.
R v W: Appeal against conviction - Failure to provide drivers information (s172). A technical defence in a paper heavy case. Not guilty. Private case, defence costs awarded. Maidstone Crown Court.
R v R: Speeding – Crown had served two documents laying the information, one within and one without the 6 month time limit. Neil identified case law which set out that in circumstances where there was confusion over the date of laying an information, the Court should favour the Defence. The Bench accepted this and the Crown offered no evidence. Defence costs awarded. Loughborough Magistrates Court.
R v B: Failing to provide details of driver – statement purporting to exhibit the postal summons was not written by the individual who had sent the letter, but by an individual whose evidence was that it would have been sent. Successful submission of no case to answer. Defence costs awarded. Lavender Hill Magistrates Court.
R v W: Appeal against conviction : Failure to provide drivers information (s172) with a technical defence in a paper-heavy case. Not guilty. Private case, defence costs awarded. Maidstone Crown Court.
R v R: Speeding : Crown served two documents, one within and one outside the 6 month time limit. Identified case law which set out that in circumstances where there was confusion over the date of laying an information, the Court should favour the Defence. Bench accepted this and the Crown offered no evidence. Defence costs awarded. Loughborough Magistrates Court.
R v B: Failing to provide details of driver. Statement purporting to exhibit the postal summons was not written by the individual who had sent the letter, but by an individual whose evidence was that it would have been sent. Successful submission of no case to answer. Defence costs awarded. Lavender Hill Magistrates Court.
- BA History & Archaeology,University of Southampton, 1994-97
- MA Design History, Royal College of Art, 1998-2000
- GDL, Nottingham Law School, 2007-2009
- Middle Temple Benefactors Scholarship
- Six-month Erasmus Scholarship to Universite de Paris IV, La Sorbonne
- Six-month Scholarship from the Italian Government to study at the State Archive, Venice
Professional qualifications & appointments
- BPTC, BPP Law School, 2010-2012, Very Competent
- Called to the Bar, Middle Temple, November 2012