Christopher Coltart QC

Christopher Coltart QC

"A phenomenal advocate who can get to grips with the technical facts quickly and with great ease."

Chambers UK 2021
Year of call: 1998 QC: 2014
For enquiries please call: 020 7353 5324 or email vcard cv linkedin save

Business Crime & Financial Services

Christopher is considered to be one of the leaders at the Bar in this field and is routinely instructed by the premier firms of solicitors.

The cases in which he is involved are invariably complex and cover a wide range of offences, including the following: bank fraud, financial instrument fraud, accountancy fraud, offences under the Companies Act, VAT fraud, mortgage fraud, corruption, bribery, money laundering, data protection, telecommunications fraud and advance fee frauds / Ponzi schemes. Many of these cases have an overseas element to them and he often advises on issues of jurisdiction and international co-operation.  He is also fully conversant with the new taxation offences contained within the Criminal Finance Act 2017, a topic upon which he has both lectured and been published. Finally, he has significant experience of both prosecuting and defending in major intellectual property cases (see cases listed at the end of this section).

Recent cases

ICO v Cambridge Analytica 

Representing Cambridge Analytica, the firm at the centre of the data harvesting row.

SFO v X 

Advising (X), a former employee of Rolls Royce, in relation to allegations of bribery and corruption brought by the SFO.


Advising (Y), a director of a UK company, alleged by the SFO to have been involved in bribery and corruption in relation to overseas mining contracts.

Re Z 

Advising a US law firm in relation to requests for Mutual Legal Assistance re the trial of Z in New York on Libor rate rigging charges.

Re X

Advising a partner from one of the ‘Big 4’ accountancy firms on allegations of corruption and bribery

Takeover Panel v [X] 

Representing company director in relation to allegations that he misled the Takeover Panel re his share dealings in a listed company.

Information Commissioner’s Office v [Y] Ltd 

Defending allegations brought by the ICO that this well known firm of loss adjusters was involved in breaches of the Data Protection Act 1998.  Trial to be in 2017.

Re [X] Bank Plc 

Advising a UK Bank on the conduct of an internal investigation into potential criminal wrongdoing.

 SFO v Barclays Bank

Advising the former General Counsel of Barclays Bank in relation to the on-going SFO investigation into the Qatari rights issue during the banking crisis.

R v David Forsey 
Representing the CEO of Sports Direct in relation to an alleged offence under s.194 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992. Trial to be heard in 2016.

Re Berkeley Mineral Resources Ltd 

Advising on the settlement of a dispute concerning the alleged misappropriation of £4 million from the company.


As set out above, Christopher has significant experience in dealing with intellectual property cases, a summary of which appears below.

R v Jumani & Others

Representing one of several defendants at Southwark Crown Court charged with a massive counterfeit DVD operation, in which registered trademarks were also infringed.  The investigation was undertaken jointly by the Film Piracy Unit of the Metropolitan Police and the Federation Against Copyright Theft.   One of the DVD outlets concerned was the largest counterfeit factory which had ever been uncovered, and the prosecution alleged that the illicit profits thereby generated ran into millions of pounds. These sums were then said to have been laundered through Dubai and the Far East.  The papers in the case ran to some 50,000 pages and the prosecution case at trial lasted for 2 months.  Christopher’s client was acquitted at that juncture following a submission of no case to answer.

R v Ahmad & Others

Prosecuted this case on behalf of the Medicines & Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency.  The defendants were accused of the large scale importation of unlicensed and counterfeit medicinal products.  This gave rise to charges under both the Medicines Act 1968 and the Trademarks Act 1994.  The defendants pleaded guilty in the Crown Court.

R v Guestyn

Prosecuted this case.  The defendant was accused of seeking to defraud several banks through the use of counterfeit currency.  The total value of the attempted fraud was in excess of $70 million.  The counterfeit nature of the currency was established and the defendant pleaded guilty in the Crown Court.

R v Jayaganesh & Others

Prosecuted this case which concerned the cloning of thousands of counterfeit credit cards.  These cards had subsequently been used all over the world, giving rise to hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of loss.  Two of the defendants pleaded guilty in the Crown Court and the third was convicted at trial.

R v Guccuk & Others

Prosecuted this case in which the defendants were charged with handling a significant volume of stolen high value jewellery.  They were further accused of selling counterfeit certificates purporting to identify Rolex and Cartier watches as being genuine.



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