Stephen Moses KC

Call: 1997 | Silk: 2016


Stephen Moses is a leading criminal Silk, described as a “class act”, appearing in high profile and seminal cases.

He appeared in “that case”, defending Gary Dobson (in the murder of Stephen Lawrence), defended the first defendant in the landmark first “judge alone” trial and in Operation Elveden [News International]. Stephen represented the “Mastermind” in the much publicised conspiracy to rob Securitas in Tonbridge of £53 million – the largest cash robbery in history and successfully defended the famed “Hard Bastard” Victor Dark.

Stephen is a ‘go-to’ Silk in cases of homicide, including matters of gross negligence manslaughter, ‘baby shaking’, cases which involve vulnerable defendants with mental health issues and which involve the partial defences of diminished responsibility and/or loss of control. Stephen has successfully appeared in numerous multi-handed cases involving young persons in which ‘cut throat’ defences are employed and which are said to be ‘gang related’ and rely on the doctrine of ‘joint enterprise’.

He also has a reputation for defending in cases involving Serious and Organised Violence, Large-scale Complex Fraud as well as Serious Sexual Offences and Terrorism, including the recent successful defence of a’ so-called’ Neo-Nazi who had built a sub-machine gun in the preparation of a terrorist attack.

He has regularly appeared successfully on appeals against both conviction and/or sentence in the Court of Appeal and is much sought after to advise on the merits of “old” convictions where there is “new evidence”.

Stephen is a Bencher and advocacy trainer at Gray’s Inn.

"Stephen is a real tactician and a formidable opponent." -Chambers UK, 2024
"Stephen has an undeniable presence in the court room. He is appealing and immensely personable with juries while simultaneously authoritative when making submissions. He is meticulous in his preparation and always one step ahead tactically."-Legal 500, 2024 - Crime
"Stephen is a class act. His cross-examination is always fireworks. He is a master of his art."-Legal 500, 2023 - Crime
Notable Cases

R v B (2023) Represented first defendant in a ‘cutthroat’ double murder as a result of ‘postcode rivalry’. A highly sensitive identification case when a fellow gang member was killed, testing the parameters of the doctrine of transferred malice and expert CCTV evidence. Novel successful legal arguments in respect of (i) admissibility of prison calls; (ii) excluding confession evidence by way of voice recognition; (iii) a narrow interpretation of the CPR to force the 4th defendant giving evidence first in time; (iv) allowing manslaughter to be left to the jury in exceptional circumstances, following forceful and sophisticated submissions. News story here

R v M (2024) Cutthroat, multi-handed murder which had been discontinued because of the paucity of identification evidence was resurrected following a conviction for an unrelated murder was successfully introduced by way of bad character evidence. An almost unprecedented decision by the Court to introduce the murder conviction as the modus operandi and the particular hallmarks with which this murder was executed. Complex legal arguments and pathological evidence re-visiting the doctrine of striking similarity. Furthermore, issues regarding potential motive occupied considerable legal argument regarding the scope of admissibility with volumes of intelligence and hearsay evidence. News story here

R v T  (2023)  The defendant had killed his friend following allegations made by the defendant’s wife that she had been raped. Issues of admissibility of cell confessions and in various prison calls. The case involved sensitive disclosure arguments in respect of the wife’s allegations (who was also originally charged with murder). Defendant was a dangerous, violent client, whose case required the presentation of protracted forensic psychiatrist and psychological opinion evidence around fitness to plead and stand trial. Successful defence of loss of control, following intricate legal analysis of this notoriously complex area of law on application to the specific facts of the case.News story here

R v S (2022) The defendant challenged ‘causation’ and relied on complex findings of neuropathology, as well as relying upon the partial defence of diminished responsibility and/or loss of control. The forensic pathology and psychiatry were in issue. The ‘battle’ between the two leading psychiatrists involved detailed cross examination and a forensic analysis of several years of medical records and specialist psychiatric findings. The defendant was a ‘vulnerable’ client with ongoing mental health issues. The issue of whether it was ‘desirable’ he gave evidence pursuant to section 35 CJA CJPOA 1994 was also a complex legal issue to determine. Central Criminal Court before HHJ Lickley kC)  BBC report here

R v K (2023)  Gang leader responsible for the execution of rogue gang members who had wronged him. Admissibility and scope of expert evidence on the methodology employed by (and very definition of) ‘gangs’ by the leading expert, Professor Harding. Novel area of law regarding the affiliation and membership of others. Scope of defence of another and whether the prosecution was able to present expert opinion evidence via an officer as to the CCTV images of the defendant and whether officers from the Gangs Unit may provide expert opinion evidence. Case also concerned issues of causation in establishing which defendant occasioned the fatal blow. News story here

R v K (2021) First defendant (of 9) in ‘revenge attack,’ gangland killing in which the deceased made two ‘dying declarations’ identifying the defendant as his killer. The case involved protracted legal argument and a novel (undecided) point of law, allowing for the addition of a lesser count to manslaughter (under Section 45 SCA 2007) in which ‘suspicion’ of intended really serious injury would fix a defendant with criminal liability, ‘not envisaged’ by Jogee, in respect of liability by an ‘aider and abettor’ in a ‘common purpose’ murder. Said to be the first time this statutory provision litigated in a homicide trial.  Central Criminal Court, before HHJ Joseph KC   Evening Standard report here

R v S (2021) Multi-handed cut-throat murder, borne out of a dispute between rival drug dealers and county line movements to Thetford from London. The conspiracy to supply Class A drugs spanned over a 6-month period. Forceful challenges to identification evidence, gang matrix evidence and technical phone evidence resulted in one count on the indictment being dismissed (pre-trial) and weakened the Crown’s case on murder to exceptionally grant bail in his case and subsequently offer no evidence on the count of murder on the 5th day of the trial. He was 16 at the time of the killing. Norwich Crown Court before The Honorary Recorder of Norwich.  BBC News story here

R v M (2021)  After detailed written and oral submissions to the High Court judge tasked with trying this ten-handed murder trial, he dismissed the counts of murder, Section 18 and Section 20 GBH against our client. The submissions involved in-depth analysis of phone evidence, the law on joint enterprise and circumstantial evidence in what was termed to be THE largest drugs conspiracy in South Wales history (which spanned nationwide). The Crown asserted that the defendant was the “lynchpin” of a serious organised crime group, who mobilised other members of the OCG to defend against the robbery of a cannabis factory involving the deceased. Cardiff Crown Court before Mr Justice Griffiths.  BBC news story here

R v S (2021) Section 5 Terrorism Act – engaging in the preparation of terrorist acts, having constructed a lethal firearm, namely a Luty Expedient Sub-Machine Gun and the composition of a draft ‘Neo-Nazi’ manifesto, with the intention of carrying out acts of terrorism pursuant to the defendant’s ‘right wing mindset’. Having met with the ‘Christchurch Killer’(Brenton Tarrent) in New Zealand and stored graphic imagery of the 2019 attack, the Crown’s case is that an attack from the defendant was imminent (placing him at the top end of the scale).  Psychological and historical challenges to the overarching prosecution evidence which goes to ‘mindset’. Birmingham Crown Court before The Hon. Recorder of Birmingham.   BBC news story here

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