Annette Henry QC

Annette remains at ‘the top of her game’ in silk. A committed defender for her entire career, she has secured many unlikely acquittals over the years. She has a very impressive back catalogue of leading defence cases. Unrivalled in her dedication and diligence to case and client, she leaves no stone unturned in the preparation and presentation of the defence. Astute and insightful, she is a tactical expert and her judgement is ‘spot on every time’. Long renowned for her specialist work in the area of mental health law, she has an exceptional ability to relate to people and juries however difficult or challenging the circumstances may be. She handles complex personalities and the added dimension they bring to a case effortlessly (transcending all areas of criminal work). She has ‘absolutely outstanding people skills ’.

Annette has been consistently recognised as a highly recommended leader in Chambers and Partners. Legal 500 quotes include her being ‘at the top of her field’ and ‘fabulous, a real fighter, whose clients trust her absolutely’.

The demand for her services and the quality of her practice continue unabated in silk, which is unsurprising given her track record and appeal with professional and lay clients alike. She has always been and continues to be instructed in the most serious, difficult, high profile and challenging cases most often combined with unusual or idiosyncratic features. In the last 2 years Annette was selected to represent a solicitor in Operation Amazon in the largest and most complex £269 million pound tax fraud e brought by HMRC. She was also brought in to represent Alex Hope, the ‘former Wembly catering manager who set himself up as a successful foreign exchange trader and self-proclaimed City whizzkid’. The case brought by the Financial Conduct Authority achieved considerable notoriety as investors funds derived from a sophisticated Ponzi style fraud were expended in casinos and clubs frequented by Premier League footballers and celebrities including Rihanna.

Annette defended in both the first insider dealing case (aged defendant suffering from stress related disorders requiring special measures during the trial) and the first group insider dealing prosecutions to be brought by the FSA. In Jacques specialist equipment had to be used in court by experts to examine thousands of the country’s most valuable antiquarian books in the most serious and sophisticated fraud ever to be perpetrated on the British Museum and Cambridge University Library. Reeves was alleged to be a counter surveillance expert brought in to avoid detection in a huge scale MTIC fraud with the use of specially designed equipment similar to that used by the perpetrators of the Dome Robbery.

She continues to successfully combine fraud and white-collar crime with the most serious and heavyweight murder/manslaughter, drugs and other serious criminal cases. In silk, she secured an acquittal in her first gang related murder trial involving witness anonymity issues and appeared for the first defendant in a cut-throat murder trial with numerous vulnerable witnesses (serious drug, alcohol and mental health problems) and a myriad of disclosure, hearsay and bad character issues. She has a wealth of experience appearing in murder trials with the most in-depth and wide ranging (including international jurisdictions) disclosure issues relating to assassination, gang, juvenile, familial and mental health cases.

Other cases in her armoury include representing the organiser in the notorious Securitas Robbery (plethora of complex disclosure issues), the mastermind (suffering from ADD) behind Operation Pillow one of the first prosecutions under the Serious Crime Act 2007 dealing with ground breaking new law relating to inchoate offences, a vital lynchpin in a wide ranging conspiracy organised from behind prison walls to supply converted firearms with ‘made to order’ ammunition for use in serious and organised crime, a wife alleged to have attempted to murder her husband suffering from Motor Neurone Disease and the highly publicised Quod bike gross manslaughter case involving the death of the 6 year old daughter of the defendant. In another highly publicised case of causing multiple deaths by dangerous driving, Munch-Peterson wrote a book about his experiences in the legal system and was full of praise for Annette.

Annette has been the recipient of many personal letters of thanks from her clients keen to express their gratitude to her and freely giving plaudits for her work on their behalf.

Fraud & financial regulation
  • Operation Amazon: Largest and most complex alleged £269 tax fraud ever brought by HMRC.
  • FCA v Alex Hope: Ponzi style fraud by former Wembley Stadium catering manager set himself up as a successful city trader and self-proclaimed ‘City whizzkid’. Expert trading & financial evidence.
  • R v Choudhury: Sophisticated immigration fraud involving a network of companies and bank accounts used by defendants to process and manufacture false evidence in support of top tier applications to the UK Border Agency. Defendant an IT expert with mental health issues. Technical computer expert evidence featured heavily in the defence at trial.
  • R v Khurshid & Others: International fraud against major mobile airtime providers. Expert financial and money laundering evidence.
  • R v Benelabed: International money laundering operation. Financial handler using sophisticated coding system and foreign exchange services to disguise activities. Mental health issues.
  • R v Dunton: Professional mortgage fraud operation involving high profile celebrity defence witnesses. Defence involved allegations of complicity by major lending banks and funding by proceeds of gambling activities by high net worth individuals. Complex financial evidence.
  • R v Hammond: SFO international investigation into corruption (insider dealing) in securing oil & gas engineering projects worth over £65 million.
  • R v Shah: First insider dealing ring to be prosecuted by the FSA (spread betting). Expert trading and financial evidence.
  • R v Umer: The ‘trusted lieutenant’ of the controller of a multi-million money laundering operation through a complex network of MSBs and onward transmission to Pakistan.
  • R v Blaney: Mass purchase of high mileage vehicles from auction, car clocking and onward distribution through car dealerships.
  • R v Melbourne & McQuoid: First and very high profile prosecution brought by the FSA against an in-house solicitor and his father-in-law. Aged defendant with special measures required for stress related condition during trial.
  • R v Kreedy: Thearchitect and central figure’ in sophisticated insurance fraud making false motor insurance claims. Complex multiple claims and financial evidence. Led to greater co-operation between insurance companies and review of claim systems/procedures.
  • R v Ali: Professional and highly orchestrated scheme to defraud insurance companies by making multiple claims in respect of high end expensive motor vehicles with sophisticated ‘ringed’ changes to their identity, which led the insurance industry to develop new computer systems to combat fraud.
  • R v Pepper: Professional conspiracy to defraud insurers by targeted carjacking and ringing high value motor vehicles.
  • R v Jemi Patel – Indian people trafficking case, charged as a fraud, by arranging false passports/documentation on behalf of illegal immigrants brought into the country from various destinations in America. Young defendant deceived by thrid party mastermind of scheme.
  • R v Azad Azam & Sheena Khan: Complex investigation into police corruption and subsequent prosecution of a serving police officer and his partner.
  • R v Jacques: The largest and most sophisticated antiquarian book fraud ever perpetrated on the British Museum and Cambridge University Libraries. The prosecution concerned the theft, disguise (by removal of a series of identifying features requiring experts to conduct examinations using specialist equipment in court) and onward sale of rare and valuable items (including Sir Isaac Newton’s Principa Mathematica) from these libraries through various major auction houses (such as Christies and Sothebys).
  • R v Reeves: MTIC (carousel) fraud in which the defendant had a dual role (conspirator in the running of the fraud and counter surveillance expert) central to the operation and organisation of the fraud by deploying counter surveillance equipment and techniques to protect and disguise the activities of the conspirators. Specialist reconstruction and demonstration conduct by experts at trial. Previous versions of similar technical equipment alleged to have been used in a serious and organised drug conspiracy 14 years before trial. Defence included allegations of police corruption. Numerous PII hearings and disclosure applications/hearings. Hearings in camera.
  • Kearns (Karagozlou and others):       MTIC fraud representing the partner of one of the leading defendants operating a scheme to reclaim VAT arising out of complex network of trading relationships between British and European companies.
  • R v Whittome: The largest joint Inland Revenue and Customs & Excise prosecution into the illegal activities of the insolvency profession.
  • R v Montilla, Newbury & Others: Money laundering and leading House of Lords case as to whether it was necessary to prove property was the proceeds of drug trafficking or of criminal conduct
  • R v May & Others: Leading House of Lords authority on confiscation.
Serious crime
  • R v Campbell: Indiscriminate gang related shootings at a nightclub. Witness anonymity and disclosure issues.
  • R v Oppong: Organiser of a triple shooting at a nightclub in Forest Gate. Investigation by Trident officers. Technical CCTV issues and complex expert evidence. Numerous disclosure applications and hearings. Rebuttal evidence. Allegations by prosecution against professional defence witness and novel applications by the prosecution to adduce third party ‘bad character’ of the partner (not a witness) of a defence witness.
  • R v Brown: Conspiracy to supply firearms and manufacture ammunition orchestrated from prison to be supplied for use in the most serious criminal offences. Multiple hearsay and third party hearsay applications. DNA mixed profile expert evidence.
  • R v Kovacs: International people trafficking ring and money laundering. Defendant worked as an IT consultant. Complex technical computer evidence and reconstruction of of complex computer messaging conversations over many months. Cross examination of interpreters and technical experts.
  • R v Savva: Operation Pillow investigation into Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients imported on a massive scale via the defendant’s company to use as cutting agents with Class A drugs. SOCO prosecution using new powers and law relating to choate offences. Defendant with ADD and main protagonist.
  • R v Simpson: Relative of the owner of a prominent London nightclub alleged to be major drugs supplier and to have transferred his drugs operation to the home counties.
  • R v Smith: London Riots 2011.       Associated to Mark Duggan case.        
  • R v Roffey: Attempted murder by wife of husband partially paralysed by Motor Neurone Disease. Expert neurologist (effects of suffocation). Cross esamination of victim paralysed from neck down. Videolink evidence of 12 year old daughter as defence witness.
  • R v Cooke: Gross negligence manslaughter by father of 6 year old daughter riding a Quad bike bought for Christmas on a public road.
  • R v Russell: Brutal domestic murder (defendant subsequently attempted suicide). Loss of control/diminished responsibility partial defences. Extensive interrelating bad character applications spanned previous 27 years. Expert psychopharmacologist on effects drugs/alcohol on metal state and behaviour.
  • R v Lewis: Young black British triple jumper, Olympic prospect and son of 2 separated barristers, charged with bank robbery.
  • Securitas robbery: Largest recorded armed robbery in British history. Manager and manager’s wife/8 year old son kidnapped separately by robbers posing as police officers. Represented organiser. Multiple and complex disclosure issues.
  • R v Osbourne: Organiser from prison of assassination of drugs dealer lured to woods and shot in front of his partner and 4 year old son. Expert palynologist (Soham murder trial). Cell informant evidence against the defendant. Major disclosure issues into the background and handling of the cell informant, motives behind evidence and other candidates for shooting.
  • R v Miah: Gruesome drugs debt murder outside defendant’s family home. Meticulous investigation/enquiry into unused material and disclosure applications provided almost all supportiing evidence for the defence case that an international gang of Bangladeshi drug dealers was responsible.
  • R v Magee: Death in custody (Belmarsh prison). Complex issues into the cause of death were raised at the inquest relating to the care & treatment of prisoners suffering from mental disorders in prison and the practice/procedures applicable in prisons as distinct from psychiatric hospital.
  • R v Khakh & Others – Complex conspiracy to commit money laundering offences between 2002 -2008 arising out of major drug dealing network (also linked to firearms offences).
  • Greenleaf Cannabis Café’ – Well known Brixton drugs cafe and money laundering case.  Take away service supplying all classes of drugs with food. Substantial financial proceeds subsequently laundered into the property market. Defendant well known figure also ran a food stall at Glastonbury Festival.
  • R v Luu: Vietnamese cannabis factory and mooney laundering operation featuring cut throat defence against all other co-defendants and psychiatric evaluation during trial. Home office issues concerning deportation served immediately before defendant’s evidence.
  • R v Kerry Cummings: Mentally disordered defendant charged with the manslaughter of a vulnerable victim. Complex medical evidence concerning cause of death/non life threatening heart condition. Range of medical experts including a consultant cardiologist cross-examined History of sexual advances by older victim to younger defendant
  • Pierre Antoine -v- The United Kingdom (European Court of Human Rights): Application of Article 6 to the fitness to plead provisions.
  • R v David Omara: Instructed post conviction in a mental health appeal against a determination that ‘he did the act’ under the fitness to plead provisions on a charge of murder. Complications arose because of the wavering mental state of the defendant between the finding that he was unfit (part 1 of the procedure) and determination of whether ‘he did the act’ (part 2) causing legal complications and unveiling a lacuna in the legal provisions.
  • The Munch-Petersen trial: Highly publicised case of multiple victims of ‘death by dangerous driving’ on a motorway which led to a serious debate on the legal definition of ‘dangerous driving’. Author of the book ‘Fatal Error’ about the incident and the prosecution that followed.
  • R v Murray: The death of an entire family was responsible for the launch of a new campaign to combat “morning after drinking”. Expert evidence on back calculationof alcohol consumption.
  • R v Clifford Norris – (brother of one of the suspects in the Stephen Lawrence case) in relation to a serious and racially motivated attack. Abuse of process argument upheld.
Professional memberships

Mental Health Review Tribunal (Part-time judge) 2001 – 2013

Mental Health Act Commissioner (Member of Broadmoor Team/appointed Patient Deaths Investigator) 1995 -2001

Mental Health Referencer 1997 (Author)