Giles Cockings KC

Giles Cockings KC

Call: 1996 | Silk: 2016


Appointed to Queen’s Counsel in 2016. Regularly instructed in some of the most serious cases at the Old Bailey and other UK courts, his practice encompasses Financial White-Collar Fraud, MTIC, Insider Dealing, Investment Fraud, City Regulation, Money Laundering, Murder, Gun Running; Sexual Offences and the large-scale importation of Drugs.

Immediately after taking Silk he has been instructed in back-to back cases of Murder, and several long running complex financial Frauds at the Old Bailey and Southwark Crown Court, all of which have received significant media attention.

He has established a reputation for hard work, meticulous preparation and a no-nonsense but courteous approach.

Regularly requested to lead juniors from other chambers and solicitor advocates from numerous firms of solicitors in many serious and complex multi handed, cut-throat cases of financial fraud, violence, drugs and money laundering.

Prior to taking Silk he was requested by some of the Country’s most eminent QKC’s to assist them in the preparation & presentation of many of the well reported high profile & difficult cases of recent years.

Financial Crime

Giles Cockings KC has an extensive track record in financial crime. Areas of specialism within this area include FCA, Banking Fraud, Insider Dealing, Mortgage Fraud, MTIC, VAT, carousel, “boiler room”, advance fee, diversion, investment & corporate fraud; bribery & corruption – many of them involving cross-jurisdictional elements. In 2019 he defends in a £100 million tax fraud.

He successfully defended in the largest attempted currency fraud to be perpetrated against the Bank of England prosecuted by the re-named Central Fraud Group and was subsequently instructed to successfully prosecute for them in a multi-million pound “Madoff type” investment fraud as lead counsel against eminent Silks and in subsequent mortgage frauds.

He has recently defended a number of Company Directors accused of financial fraud, both within the private sector and PLC’s. These cases have ranged from internal accountancy issues prior to flotation, to issues of bribery and corruption, manipulation of markets through to the high yield banking lending frauds borne out of the commission culture within the City before the economic crash.

In 2014 he defended the main defendant, the Managing Director of a PLC accused of a £39 million property/ banking fraud. This white-collar defendant faced 104 allegations, 83 professional witnesses and cut-throat defences from other defendants, each blaming “the Boss”.

Having previously worked within the Stock Exchange, Giles Cockings’ expertise extends to the workings of the financial markets, specialised accountancy fraud and other complex City frauds, where his full understanding of banking operations, career experience in the financial markets and interest in regulatory work and FCA legislation come into their own.

He is a master of disclosure and is well versed in City culture. He has been responsible for unearthing huge disclosure abuses perpetrated by the Banks, and other City Institutions, that have occurred when a ‘scape-goat’ director/ officer of the company, faces prosecution. These have ranged from the destruction of potential evidence; financial documents to email traffic; ‘coincidental’ server replacement to ‘software glitches’ – all, at times, used to protect the position of the Banks.

He was responsible in cases for unearthing the ‘Global Restructuring Group’ practice that was rife within some Banking organisations. These included finance houses, having driven client companies into administration then selling client assets into their own wholly owned subsidiaries for profit.

In 2015 as lead counsel he successfully defended the Managing Director of an Alcohol bonded warehouse in relation to allegations of diversion fraud and corruption within the HMRC. The Crown relied upon covert surveillance and extensive probe evidence. Through cross examination & attention to detail he established that HMRC had investigated on a false premise & the defendant was in fact a victim of corruption & not a conspirator. He was duly acquitted. He was also counsel of choice when defending in Operation ‘Close-knit’ another substantial diversion fraud.

He has also recently defended the Managing Director of a London Hedge Fund and a Director of a Property Development Company, both for high yield investment frauds and both widely reported cases in the Press.

His experience of confiscation and asset seizure cases extends across the areas of fraud and drugs crime.

The Legal Profession

Called upon by the legal profession to defend their own, he has represented a number of solicitors of the Supreme Court who have found themselves charged with high yield fraud by the SFO. Recently successfully defending one of the commercial partners of a well-known Legal 500 firm in a £65 million mortgage fraud, and subsequently successfully representing a partner of another solicitors’ firm accused of defrauding the Olympic Development Authority. Both acquitted. He was instructed to represent a firm of solicitors, with the involvement of the Law Society, in relation to Wasted Costs and the interpretation of S6 Criminal Procedure Investigation Act 1996 and the drafting of Defence Statements. It is a leading authority.

Violent Crime

His experience over the years in violent crime cases has included close to 60 major murder trials and a similar number of attempted murders, reaching successful conclusions in 90%. Here his experience includes contract killings, cultural and abuse-led revenge killings, gang warfare, financially driven murders and ‘single punch’ deaths. He is experienced in the use of cell site evidence, blood splatter, ballistics, mass spectrocopy and DNA. He has also appeared in manslaughter, armed robbery, conspiracy to rob, firearms and terrorism cases, and has experience of shaken baby syndrome and issues of medical causation.


Recent examples of Drugs crime include acting in connection with four of the largest alleged importations of Class A drugs (Cocaine & Heroin) into the United Kingdom in recent years, both as lead and leading counsel.

Modern Slavery

He has been leading counsel in three of the most significant Modern Slavery Cases to have been prosecuted in the UK.

He was leading counsel for one of the main defendants in the much publicised “Gypsy Slavery Trials”, defending in the first prosecution for Slavery in the UK since the early 19th Century (R -v- Connors). It was new law with no UK legal precedent. Allegations made that homeless men were being ensnared and held against their will under threat of violence. Heads were shaved, and they were given overalls to ‘de-humanise’ and to erode their personal autonomy before being put to work.   It is the leading UK authority under S71 Coroners & Justice Act 2009. Subsequent submissions on areas before the Court of Appeal have now been incorporated into the new legislation on this area, the Modern Slavery Act 2015. He was then later instructed for one of the main defendants in the 5 trials arising from Operation Pottery (R -v- Rooney & others) and also as leading counsel in Operation Marathon (R-v-Joyce & Boiling & others) – all allegations of Modern Slavery & Fraud involving the Travelling Community.

Other Areas

In the area of sexual offences, his extensive experience includes Operation Goldsmith, involving the highly-publicised Welsh National Children’s’ Home historic abuse allegations: He acted in the only trial of 12 in which any defendant was acquitted.

Although now predominantly a defence practitioner, Giles Cockings KC has also been graded by the Government as Category 4, being the top category for prosecutors.

As the only lawyer within a medical family he has a keen interest in Coroners Inquests. He has been involved in a number of high-profile inquests ranging from deaths within NHS and issues of medical care to the high-profile inquest in 2010 surrounding the death of Dr Ashraf Marwan whom the press reported as being the most infamous alleged double agent for Israel & Egypt during the Yom Kippur war. He has also appeared in a number of Courts-Martial across the country for the Armed Forces.

He has represented professionals facing disciplinary action in the field of medicine/dentistry and has a burgeoning interest in the fields of corporate manslaughter; financial regulatory investigations and D&O liability.


"He's bright, witty and sharp, and his cross examination is fantastic." -Chambers UK, 2024
"Giles is an exceptional silk. He is an outstanding and charismatic advocate who is polished, sophisticated and charming. He is very skilled, highly intelligent, extremely articulate and is one of the best speech makers in the business. He is a master tactician with a finely tuned strategic brain and has a great insight as to how juries respond and they love him for it." -Legal 500, Fraud: Crime
"Giles has an excellent style and approach with clients – he quickly gains the trust of the client and puts them at ease." -Legal 500, Fraud: Crime


  • Memberships: CBA, South Eastern Circuit, Hon Soc Middle Temple
  • Chambers Pupil Supervisor
  • Middle Temple Award Winner
  • Author of; “CPIA: Issues of Disclosure”


Recent Cases

R v Ceesay and Others (2023): Gangland multi-handed murder at the Old Bailey. Double victim. Case involved revenge led targeted killing of opposing gang leaders in North London. Ride-Out Shooting. Acquitted when other defendants convicted. Recognised by all teams as ‘stellar performance of good old fashioned cross examination’ and best speech on the case. Hundreds of hours of CCTV necessitated time consuming analysis to separate defendants. Multiple eyewitnesses; forensic issues of DNA, telephone and cell site. Received commendation for conduct of the case. News story here

R v Briken Quni (2021): Horrific execution of head of Albanian drugs cartel in North London, Ergys Koci known as Tony Montana – named after the Al Pacino Character in the film Scarface. Defendant ex Albanian military. Death caused by 12 fatal claw hammer impacts, crushing the skull multiple times – each capable of fatality followed by 28 stab wounds to the heart with a 21-inch knife. Attempts to conceal body. Case called for extensive cross examination of pathologist and multiple witnesses. Issues of loss of control and self-defence. Defendant acquitted of murder. Received commendation for conduct of the case. News story here

R v Giovanni Addae Johnson & Others (2023): Gangland multi-handed youth murder.  Revenge attack targeted at private party in North London. Culminated in massive street knife brawl. Hours of CCTV documented gangs of youths all brandishing knives/ zombie knives/ machetes etc., Expert evidence of CCTV analysis and timings utilised; telephone cell site/ voice notes/ grime lyrics. Acquitted of murder. Other defendants convicted. News story here

R v Cleon Brown and others (2023): Honey Trap Murders. Became part of TV Documentary aired on television in Spring 2023. Two Women lured male victims with offers of sex into state of insecurity utilising GHB Rohypnol date rate drugs before male associates came to steal Rolex watches, Mercedes motor cars and high value items. This culminated in brutal murder when victim awoke from the drug. Death caught on CCTV security cameras. Mass blood spectrology and scene of crime described as ‘akin to an abattoir’ owing to voluminous blood. Cutthroat defences. Acquitted of murder when other defendants were convicted. News story here

R v Oliver Muldowney (2023): Murder driven by jealous rage in public street as school children exited schools. Muldowney murdered his wife’s lover in Richmond upon Thames. Background of drugs. Defendant was a drug dealer, victim an addict. Complicated by perverting the course of justice and attempts to cover up the scene and go on the run. Multiple cross examination of eyewitnesses; CCTV and recordings of previous rage outbursts; bad character/ hearsay and cell site analysis. News story here


  • Legal 500 leading silk 2024 logo
  • Chambers & Partners Giles Cockings ranked in UK Bar