Ian Harris

Call 1990


“He’s well liked by judges and is a very impressive advocate.”

Chambers and Partners 2021
Photo of Ian Harris


A highly experienced and highly acclaimed junior by Chambers and Partners as a leader in the criminal field, Ian is used to handling heavy and complex cases across the entire criminal spectrum, often leading second juniors in both prosecution and defence trials. He is briefed in many drugs, fraud and violence cases and has acted in many murder and gangland conspiracies, as well as serious sexual offences.

He is regularly briefed in the Court of Appeal and has represented the prosecution on murder appeals (most recently in 2015 when a hearsay point between co-defendants was argued) and many appellants on conviction and sentence appeals.

Ian’s regulatory work involves representing solicitors. He has extensive experience of the workings of solicitors’ practices, having originally qualified as a solicitor in 1979 and working for different firms before becoming an equity partner for 8 years.

Criminal Cases


R v G (2018) – alleged campaign of historical rapes of daughter going back 30 years. Detailed disclosure applications led to over 14 years’ medical, social service and psychiatric records being disclosed. After an abortive first trial, defence expert evidence showed that complainant ‘significantly unreliable’. Crown eventually offered no evidence and Judge directed an enquiry into CPS approach to disclosure.

R v W (2017) – successful defence of Polish National charged with raping a street worker.

R v G (2016) – successful defence of man charged with indecently assaulting a child; various defence applications obtained disclosure of CCTV that excluded G from any criminal involvement.

R v C (2017) – client acquitted of historic indecent assault allegedly when he was babysitting.

R v B (2018) – Male client acquitted of raping employee. Diversity issues required very sensitive handling. Applications for disclosure of medical records allowed and cast doubt on complainant’s version of events. Successful applications made to adduce complainant’s character; leave granted to cross-examine her on previous sexual history (pursuant to s. 41 YJCE 1999).



R v W (2016) – Acted for defendant in multi-million pound ‘Land Banking’ and money laundering conspiracies. Acquitted by judicial direction following successful submission of no case to answer after several weeks of evidence.

R. N (2015) – Acted for company director in conspiracy to defraud local Councils of monies for educational purposes. Following detailed disclosure requests prosecution offered no evidence against him during first week of potentially lengthy trial.

R. v E (2014/15) – Acted for company director in multi-million pound conspiracy to defraud (pension monies); Judge stopped case following defence submissions. Appeared in CA when prosecution appealed this ruling which was upheld and defendant acquitted.

R v W (2014) – Acted for defendant in lengthy multi-handed case of conspiracies to assist prisoners to escape (armed escape from prison vehicles) and to possess firearms. Acquitted of firearms conspiracy.



May 2016 – R v DW and 10 others – acquittal on submission of no case to answer ‘land banking’ fraud; acted for director of various companies allegedly involved in complex multi-million pound conspiracy.

R v B and others. Defence leading junior, MTIC ‘carousel’ fraud.

R v T and others. defence leading junior, diversion fraud. 3 month trial.

R v M and others. Defence leading junior, VAT fraud. Significant diversity issues, necessitating expert evidence relating to the travelling community. VHCC regulated.

R v E and others. (‘Cockle pickers’). Led defence junior, category 2 fraud; defendant a businessman facilitating illegal immigration; extensive research into business and accountancy records involving experts and international considerations. 6-month trial, subject to VHCC regulations.

R v C and others. Leading defence junior. ILA (individual learning account) fraud on Government. VHCC regulated.

R v F and others. Leading defence junior, fraud on Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council. VHCC regulated.

R v E and Others. Defence junior in pension fraud. Submission of ‘no case’ allowed by Judge, and Prosecution appeal under S. 58 C3A 2003 dismissed by Court of Appeal.

R v C and others (2015) Defended in 9 week tachograph fraud – defendant acquitted.

R v N and others (2015) Education and tax fraud



R v S. Led junior in triple murder by burning.

R v J. Led junior, double murder.

R v Q. Murder and dismemberment of wife, followed by television appeals for her return. Led junior.

R v D. Prosecution; murder of pensioner by her carer. Led junior, significant scientific and financial evidence requiring meticulous preparation and presentation. R v F. Junior alone, manslaughter, Crown Court and Court of Appeal.

R v F. Prosecution – murder and attempt murder, led in Crown Court, alone in CA re tariff for knife killings.

Rao – prosecution double murder, significant psychiatric issues; junior alone, section 37/41 Restriction Order imposed.

R v B and others (2015) three handed led prosecution murder for gain, body never found. Preparation and presentation of many years of very detailed financial evidence of all relevant parties and presentation of case unled in CoA.



R v W and others. Prosecution. Class A importations from Dominican Republic. R v K and others. Defence. Class A importations and firearms. VHCC regulated.

R v B & others. Defence. Class A importations. Leading junior, in Crown Court and retrial, and conviction appeal in Court of Appeal. Contested confiscation proceedings. VHCC regulated.

R v T and others. Prosecution. Turkish Class A conspiracy, significant international elements in consequent contested confiscation proceedings.

R v T and others. Class A conspiracy, importations from Holland and Turkey. VHCC regulated.

R v B. Prosecution of serious class A dealers and linked money laundering trials.

Operations P 1 and 2 (2014/14). Leading junior in multi-handed drugs/money laundering prosecutions.

Operation C (2013/14). Prosecution of series of multi-handed class A & class B conspiracies.



R v B Prosecution of Premiership footballer for assaults in Liverpool.

R v M. Prosecution of former deputy leader of Sefton Council for attempted murder, both in Crown Court and Court of Appeal.

R v Y. Defence of adult defendant who perverted course of justice following the shooting and killing of the child victim of the Norris Green and Croxteth gang wars. R v H. Defence of man charged with series of ‘first division’ armed robberies.

R v J. Defence of man charged with organising grenade attack on a prosecution witness’s house.

R v W. Defence of defendant charged with conspiracies arising out of armed attack on prison van to facilitate escape of 2 dangerous prisoners.

R v W and others; Defended in 3 handed cut-throat attempt murder. Client convicted of s. 20 wounding and received 2 years’ imprisonment; co-defendants convicted of attempted murder – ‘assassins trying to take over rival’s drugs business’ – per HH Judge Thomas QC – sentenced to life imprisonment.

R v W (2015) Successful defence of only acquitted defendant in attempted murder cut throat case.



R v C. Defence murder, preparation of psychiatric and psychological evidence for special measures for severely disabled defendant.

R v J; defence of psychiatrically damaged individual charged with £ ¼ million ‘insider’ fraud on Building Society.

R v B. Prosecution of trial of issue of fitness to plead and trial of acts of defendant charged with armed kidnapping.

R v R as (as above)

R v G. Junior for defence of man who killed his mother having been released from a previous sentence imposed for manslaughter of his father (diminished) and wounding his mother. S. 45A (hybrid) Order imposed.