BCL Solicitors LLP are pleased to be once again recognised as a top-tier firm with an extensive team of outstanding individuals in the new Legal 500 United Kingdom 2021-2022 Guide with a total of seven leading practice areas identified and 14 lawyers commended for their standout contribution in their respective practices.

The Legal 500 UK Guide is one of the leading independent directories of UK legal services, in which the UK's leading firms and lawyers are identified.

In the 2021-2022 edition, BCL is recommended as a top-tier or leading firm in the following practice areas:

  • Crime: General
  • Fraud: White-Collar Crime (advice to individuals)
  • Corporate and Commercial: Customs and Excise
  • Dispute Resolution: Tax litigation and Investigations
  • Health & Safety
  • Risk Advisory: Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity
  • Risk Advisory: Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime (advice to corporates)

In this year's 'Hall of Fame' which highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession.

Two of our lawyers are listed in the elite "Hall of Fame" list:

Five of our lawyers are listed in the "Leading Individuals" list. The Legal 500 United Kingdom 2021's guide to outstanding lawyers nationwide:

A further three BCL lawyers are recognised in the "Next Generation Lawyers" list:

And finally we have four lawyers in the "Rising Stars Lawyers" list:

The Legal 500's editorial for each of BCL's practice areas is set out below:

Crime: General

'BCL are a cut above the rest. They are relentless in their pursuit of the best result for the client while maintaining a strong sense of professionalism at all times. They get spectacular results which reflect the total dedication of the partners and associates to their cases.'

The team is described as 'an absolute powerhouse – the go-to firm for anything crime related'. The firm handles the full range of serious, complex and general criminal matters, and during the pandemic has seen an increase of work for clients accused of online sexual offences and defending those accused of domestic assault. The team continues to feature a number of heavy-hitting individuals, including the phenomenally good' Ellen Peart, and Mark Haslam, who 'cuts through the nonsense with laser-sharp focus'. Other growing areas of focus include school and university investigations, as well as work for sports professionals facing criminal charges. Associates David Hardstaff and Daniel Jackson are other key members of the team.

Fraud: White-Collar Crime (Advice to Individuals)

'Very deep experience – the leading boutique specialising in individual criminal prosecutions. Massive experience in dealing with the SFO, the NCA, the CMA and the FCA. They have some of the leading white-collar partners and very committed hardworking associates, meaning the firm's teams provide the highest-calibre representation across the board.'

BCL Solicitors LLP houses 'some of the leading white-collar partners and very committed hardworking associates' and provides 'the highest-calibre representation across the board'. The group is adept at handling the full scope of financial crime matters, including issues handled under the auspices of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) and the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), among others. The group stands out for its multiple successes at the SFO, where it is equally adept at providing prosecution avoidance advice as well as representing key suspects in fraud investigations. Multi-jurisdictional work is yet another key strength of the practice; the recent work of Richard Sallybanks stands out across Europe, the US and the Middle East, and Shaul Brazil focuses on acting for high-net-worth individuals in cross-border criminal proceedings. Founding partner Ian Burton leads the department and has a wealth of experience spanning over four decades; Burton and Michael Drury are lauded as 'giants in this field' by clients and peers alike. Jane Glass is also highly skilled with 25 years of experience in anti-money laundering and financial crime work. Shula de Jersey is a stalwart of London's fraud community and chairs the Fraud Lawyers Association. Harry Travers is noted for his tax evasion practice; John Binns has notable sanctions expertise; and Julian Hayes has credentials in extradition and mutual legal assistance. Clients also single out senior associate Hannah Raphael and associate Anoushka Warlow.

Health & Safety

'BCL handles heavyweight corporate clients in very serious and complex health and safety work. The team is knowledgeable, personable and heavily invested in each client.'

BCL's reputation in the health and safety sector is one of a deep, criminal/regulatory pedigree. The firm's focus is on severe cases often involving overlapping allegations of fraud, regulatory breaches, corporate manslaughter, or accidental death. Richard Reichman and Tom McNeill 's criminal law backgrounds, paired with extensive corporate advisory expertise, is what distinguishes the practice and its offering from the sector standard civil background. Beyond the focus on contentious health and safety work, the group is sector agnostic; able to apply its technical and strategic approach across multiple areas and have been sought out by clients in areas including fire, food and environmental safety.

Regulatory Investigations & Corporate Crime (Advice to Corporates)

'Very competent team with great response time and high level of knowledge. Team is able to deal with complex matters in a very efficient way.'

BCL Solicitors LLP is best-known for its representation of individuals in the white-collar crime space, but also handles criminal matters for professional and financial services companies, retailers and technology and media companies, among other corporate clients. Led by Ian Burton, the team advises on financial crime and tax fraud, supply-chain issues ranging from bribery to modern slavery, and counselling matters relating to data-driven businesses. Clients have also highlighted the expertise of Michael Drury and Shaul Brazil.

Customs and Excise

'One of the oldest specialist boutiques with strength in depth across the partner and associate rosters. Has an excellent track record in acting in the most high-profile criminal HMRC cases. One of the few firms that combines in-depth tax experience with top-notch criminal expertise.'

BCL Solicitors LLP fields a 'strong, knowledgeable team' with an 'excellent track record' representing clients in criminal HMRC cases. Practice head Harry Travers is an 'extremely capable lawyer' and has extensive experience in tax litigation and fraud mandates. The team also includes John Binns, who is praised for his 'sound, commercial advice', and founding and senior partner Ian Burton, who has a strong background in handling high-profile tax investigations.

Tax Litigation and Investigations

'BCL's team has extensive experience in particular with dealing with the criminal aspects of tax investigations. This is very rare amongst firms practising in tax.'

Under the leadership of Harry Travers, BCL Solicitors LLP's team has developed a practice that operates at the intersection between fraud and tax law, where it predominantly represents clients in HMRC criminal investigations and judicial reviews. Ian Burton handles high-profile tax investigations for individuals and corporates.

Data Protection, Privacy and Cybersecurity

'BCL have unique practitioner insight on a range of national security and law enforcement powers and are not afraid to take the hard cases'.

Boutique firm BCL Solicitors LLP focuses on data protection-related investigations and regulatory work. Former legal director of GCHQ Michael Drury heads up the team, bringing unique expertise in relation to investigatory powers and cybersecurity, including breach work and data protection issues. The practice is particularly experienced in dealing with data access demands instigated by intelligence agencies, law enforcement and other public authorities

For full access to the 2021-2022 The Legal 500 rankings, visit their website.