Harry MacDonald

Call: 2010

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Harry is an established advocate enjoying a busy practice. He specialises in the prosecution and defence of serious crimes. He has acted, either as led junior or as junior alone, in a wide range of cases consistently involving the gravest allegations of violence, drugs, dishonesty and sexual offending. Harry has particular experience of the complex issues that often arise in disclosure or expert heavy cases and multi-defendant trials.

Harry has also enjoyed considerable success in appellate jurisdictions. He also has an excellent grasp of issues that are regularly present in private prosecutions and many quasi-criminal proceedings.


Notable Cases


R v SB and another. (2019-2020): Harry, led by Pippa McAtasney QC, acts for a Defendant accused of assisting an offender in a murder. The case is the subject of extensive national media interest.

R v RO. Section 18 GBH (2019): Harry prosecuted a Defendant in an alleged machete attack leaving the Complainant with serious facial injuries. The trial, heard at Wood Green Crown Court, involved substantial arguments regarding disclosure and non-defendant bad character.

R v RL. Importation of cocaine (2019): Harry represented the Defendant, who was accused of bringing over 6kgs of high purity cocaine into the country through Gatwick Airport. The trial, at Croydon Crown Court, involved a considerable body of expert evidence concerned with the mechanics of international drug smuggling, with specific focus upon cases where a Defendant’s luggage has been “ripped into” by others operating outside the jurisdiction.

R v SC and others. Conspiracy to supply Class A drugs (2019): Harry represented a Defendant charged as part of extensive “County line” drug dealing network throughout a two-month trial at Isleworth Crown Court. The case required analysis of large volumes of telephone and associated evidence.

R v MR. Section 18 GBH (2019): Harry prosecuted a Defendant accused of branding his wife with a hot iron. The trial, head at Woolwich Crown Court, included complex evidence from a forensic pathologist on the mechanics of burns injuries.

R v KF, CM and PM. Violent disorder (2019): Harry prosecuted three defendants accused of participation in mass, serious violent disorder at a football match between Millwall and Birmingham City at “the Den” football ground in London. The trial, at Woolwich Crown Court, involved extensive analysis of voluminous CCTV evidence.

R v AA. Sexual Assault (2018): Harry prosecuted multiple sexual allegations against a very senior member of the Egyptian armed forces in a highly sensitive case, attracting national media interest, at Canterbury Crown Court.

R v RS and others. Money laundering (2018): Harry represented a Defendant alleged to have laundered money on behalf of an extensive Class A drugs conspiracy covering the South of England and generating millions of pounds in revenue,

R v JF. Attempted Section 18 GBH (2018): Harry was engaged to reopen a guilty a plea and subsequently represent a Defendant alleged to have deliberately rammed a motorcyclist with his car at speeds in excess of 80mph on a busy dual carriageway.

R v IS (2018): Harry represented a Defendant, the proprietor of a lettings agency charged with slum landlord offences. Legal submission advanced on the Defendant’s behalf led to dismissal of the case.

R v CJ and another. Sexual assaults upon a child under 13 and child cruelty (2017): Harry appeared as led junior on behalf of a father accused of sexually abusing his own children. The trial, heard over 7 weeks at Inner London Crown Court, required robust analysis of the prosecution disclosure exercise and intensive consideration of huge volumes of third party material served during the trial.

R v MW. Inciting sexual activity with a child (2017):  Court of Appeal. Harry represented a Defendant on appeal against sentence imposed for serious sexual offending against children. Harry successfully advanced legal submissions based on the sentencing judge’s approach to mitigation concerning the Defendant’s age and personal circumstances. The immediate custodial sentence imposed was substituted for a suspended sentence order.

R v AH. Home invasion armed robbery (2017). Harry represented the Defendant in a sensitive case requiring management of a large quantity of third party material. The trial was heard at Portsmouth Crown Court.

R v CS and others. Conspiracy to defraud (2016): Harry represented a Defendant over the course of a six-week trial at Basildon Crown Court in which the prosecution relied on huge quantities of digital material. The case attracted extensive national media interest.

R v CS and others. Conspiracy to defraud (2016): Harry acted as the Crown’s disclosure counsel prior to and throughout the trial in a highly sensitive homicide case at Lewes Crown Court.

R v AC. Bomb hoax (2016): Harry prosecuted a leading silk as junior alone at a trial heard at Lewes Crown Court. The case concerned the threat of an explosive device aboard an aircraft at Gatwick Airport.

R v AW and another (2015): Harry represented a youth, enjoying certificate for appointed counsel, in relation to an allegation of arson with intent to endanger life. The case required careful examination of the causation of the fire, the young Defendant’s mental health and his capacity to form the requisite intent for the principle or alternative offences.


Qualifications and Associations

LLB (Hons) – Southampton University (2009)

BVC – (2010)

LLM (Hons) (Merit) (2011)

Harry acts a mentor to student barristers through the Lincoln’s Inn Debating Society.

Harry has been engaged to provide training to the Police through drug expert training programme.

Harry has also provided training to National Crime Association and border force officers.


Panel Memberships

Harry is appointed as a CPS panel advocate at grade 3.

Chambers & Prs: Leading Barrister

Legal 500: Leading Individual