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Legal articles and expert perspectives
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Legal articles and expert perspectives
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Legal Articles and Expert Perspectives - Page 43 of 45

May
2012

Entrapment 6 min read
May 2, 2012
Some readers of this article will know all about test-purchase operations where under-cover officers will ask suspected street dealers for drugs - the officers will of course be 'wired for sound'. Other readers may be painfully aware of so-called 'participating informants' where a member of a group is also acting as a police informer. But the extent of under-cover police operations would surprise many. Rahman Ravelli solicitors alone have been involved in cases where an officer has pretended to be involved in the car-ringing business and even where an officer masqueraded as an under-cover contract killer for hire. These operations often lead to allegations by a defendant of entrapment. Entrapment is not a defence in English criminal law. However, if entrapment can be demonstrated then the case is likely to be stopped as an abuse of process or, at the very least, the evidence obtained excluded from any trial. Read more

May
2012

Informant Evidence 6 min read
May 2, 2012
What is an informer?A pedestrian who calls 999 after witnessing a crime is an 'informant' in that he or she is informing the police about a crime. That person may become a witness and there might be factual disputes about what the informant saw, but there can be no attack on the motives of the witness in assisting the police. Then there is the paid informant - this is altogether a different animal. The paid informant will be registered and have a police handler and will periodically provide intelligence to the police for reward. This sort of person is unlikely to become a witness in a trial. The prosecution would never reveal the identity of their informant, even if it were somehow relevant to the defence case. However, if this type of informer were to come out of the shadows and testify in Court then their credibility as a witness of truth would certainly be an issue - assuming the evidence was disputed by the accused. This is when tactical defending counts. Material relating to the credibility of the informer can be demanded, e.g. de-briefing notes, first accounts, meetings with officers etc. If there were any suggestion that the informer would expect reward for testifying then that would have to be disclosed to the defence; R v Smith (unrep.) 29th July 2004, para. 17. This might not be enough to exclude the informant's evidence from the trial, but it would help establish the informant's unreliability in the eyes of the jury. Read more

May
2012

Stop Bugging Us! 6 min read
May 1, 2012
The bugging of conversations between lawyers & their clients in prison The recent news that Sadiq Khan MP was bugged whilst visiting one of his constituents at HMP Woodhill was shocking enough. Even more shocking is the allegation that Special Branch telephoned the prison before the MP had even booked his visit and asked a DS Mark Kearney to "keep an eye out for" Khan who was to visit a Mr. Babar Ahmad, who had been arrested on a U.S. extradition warrant and held at Woodhill. Kearney is now facing trial for allegedly tipping off a local newspaper about other stories. This news about an MP being bugged led to further stories about lawyers being bugged, and even our possessions being looked through when they are left at the gate-house during legal visits. One solicitor was even accidentally sent a transcript of a telephone conversation he had with his client. Read more

May
2012

Conspiracy to Murder 6 min read
By Azizur Rahman May 1, 2012
The essence of this offence is in the 'agreement'; - the agreement to kill - there need not in fact be a dead body. On the other hand prosecutors sometimes like to use this charge when there is more than one person in the dock and all are alleged to have played a different role in an unlawful killing. In those circumstances it is sometimes easier to charge conspiracy to murder even though there is a body. The authors, for example, were involved in a gang-land case where the defendant had been charged with conspiracy to murder (he was later acquitted) - the murder victim had been shot by an unknown male who was with a group of other masked males. The police made several arrests and tried them all for conspiracy to murder. Read more

May
2012

The New Money Laundering Offences and Longfirm Frauds 5 min read
May 1, 2012
Under the old law, 'money laundering' offences - that is, hiding money derived from criminal activities into assets which appear to have a legitimate origin - were limited to the proceeds of drug trafficking, the proceeds of other criminal conduct and terrorist funds. Read more

May
2012

Rahman Ravelli Solicitors... defending people against fraud and corruption allegations in the TCI and around the world 3 min read
May 1, 2012
Since investigations began into allegations of bribery and corruption in the Turks and Caicos (TCI), Rahman Ravelli Solicitors has been advising current and potential clients. As Special Prosecutor Helen Garlick's team conclude their investigations, there will be many people in need of expert advice and representation from experienced lawyers. Read more

May
2012

Murder: Conspiracy and Joint Enterprise 7 min read
May 1, 2012
Murder; the most serious of offences and, almost, the easiest to understand. Killing within intent to do so, or to cause really serious harm. What could be simpler for a jury? Unfortunately, it can get very complicated when there is more than one person in the dock or the charge is conspiracy to murder rather than actual murder. In this article we look at some of the complexities thrown up by these two very different offences - offences which still trouble the Court of Appeal with alarming regularity despite the law remaining fairly stable. Read more

Mar
2012

Bootlegging and Duty Evasion 6 min read
March 28, 2012
The phrase 'bootlegging' is centuries old. It eminates from returning sailors who would hide alcohol in their boots - away from the sight of the duty men at the ports. Smuggling can of course take on many forms from simple 'booze cruise' overloads through to drugs, guns, counterfeited products and even people smuggling. We attempt here to look at a few frontier type offences both old and new. Read more

Mar
2012

Financial Offences 6 min read
March 28, 2012
In this article we attempt to address some of the issues that often arise when a Defendant is charged with a 'financial offence'; e.g. conspiracy to defraud or cheat, fraudulent trading, false accounting, tax or duty evasion, MTIC (or Carousel ) frauds and the like. There is not the space here to look at each specific offence - instead we have made some general points about defending this type of case. Of course no short article like this can ever cover the multitude of variables that arise in this broad spectrum of offences, but there are things that both Defendants and their defenders can bear in mind at an early stage of the case. Read more

Mar
2012

Fraud Act 2006 5 min read
March 28, 2012
FRAUD UNDER THE FRAUD ACT 2006Much of the 'old' law on fraud was to be found in the Theft Acts of 1968 and 1978 as well as some common-law offences (i.e. developed in case-law rather than by Parliament). Many of the statutory provisions led to technical arguments and difficulties in practical application. It was clear that the law on fraud needed updating and the Law Commission produced a report on the topic in 2002. That report led to the Fraud Act 2006 which came into force on 15/1/07. Its provisions apply to conduct committed on or after that date. The Act widened and simplified the law of fraud, though Parliament has still kept in place some of the common-law offences such as conspiracy to defraud and conspiracy to cheat the revenue. Read more

Legal Articles and Expert Perspectives

Rahman Ravelli

Serious Fraud, Regulatory and Complex Crime Lawyers

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