Andrew Langdon QC

Year of call: 1986 | Silk: 2006

"He is particularly known for his involvement as both prosecution and defence counsel in extremely high-profile, serious crime matters, including multi-handed homicides and cases of false imprisonment."
Chambers UK 2017

Andrew Andrew QC

Andrew is a criminal silk who regularly appears in cases of homicide, complex fraud and regulatory crime. He has appeared in some of the most notable cases on the Western Circuit including the Bristol trial concerning the murder of Becky Watts.

Ranked as a ‘Star Silk’ in Chambers 2016 Guide he is reported by them as having ‘‘… all the gravitas, demeanour and intellect that one would hope for in a QC. There is no case that he could not handle. He is passionate, persuasive, forensic and delivers in a way that most barristers can only dream of emulating."

The Legal 500 report that 'Juries visibly enjoy his submissions, and he is as engaging as he is persuasive’ and 'He has a great judgement, and is a very persuasive advocate and a fantastic team player.'

A recent Court of Appeal Judgment made reference to his ‘conspicuous skill’.

Andrew was Leader of the Western Circuit from 2013-2015. His is currently Vice Chairman of the Bar Council for England and Wales, and will become Chairman in 2017. He will return to practice as a criminal silk on the Western Circuit in 2018.

A passionate believer in trial by jury, Andrew regards appearing as a barrister in the criminal courts of England and Wales ‘an immense privilege that brings with it a heavy responsibility. The only recipe is hard work.’  

Crime

Over the years, Andrew has won a reputation for his ability to handle heavy and complex cases. For both defence and prosecution, he leads in mainstream serious crime, involving murder, drugs and fraud; but aspects of his career are outside the mainstream. He led the criminal prosecution of the Buncefield Explosion oil companies. 

Significant Cases

  • R v Hewitt and Others Bristol 2016.  A prosecution of senior staff and care workers concerning the care of residents with learning disabilities. 
  • R v Barclay and Others Bristol 2016. Andrew led for the defence in an eight handed murder trial involving a fatal stabbing in Gloucester. 
  • R v Matthews & Hoare Bristol 2015 - This case involved a five week trial concerned with the killing and dismemberment of teenager Becky Watts. Andrew defended Ms Hoare who was acquitted of murder and convicted of manslaughter and other offences.
  • R v Timothy Crook Bristol 2015 - This case related to the prosecution of a defendant who killed his parents many years ago but had until recently been unfit to be tried.
  • R v NMSL 2015 - The defence of a company charged (together with Balfour Beatty Engineering Services) with Heath and Safety Offences arising from a fatal accident at Heathrow Data Centre.
  • R v Gould 2014 - The defence of a contractor involved in the construction of a new stand at the Rose Bowl Stadium, Hampshire.
  • R v Nowak &  Others Bristol 2013 - This case involved the premeditated murder for financial gain of the partner of one of the three defendants. The victim was subsequently left in a burning car as part of an attempt to set a false alibi. Andrew defended one of the three Polish nationals on trial. The case was comprised of a complex body of circumstantial evidence.
  • R v Anderson &  Adams: Bristol 2012 - This case involved the prosecution of gun crime - a murder and three other gunshot victims of a shooting during the St Pauls Carnival in Bristol. The witnesses and participants emanated from two groups who had travelled from London. Andrew led for the Prosecution It was an early application of the law relating to liability attaching to both parties involved in a mutual ‘shoot-out’ when a bystander is killed (as opposed to liability only attaching to the firer of the weapon causing the injury. The case is currently pending before the Court of Appeal.
  • R v Sandra Clinch: Truro 2012 - Andrew defended Mrs Clinch who was eventually convicted of manslaughter following the fatal stabbing of her husband with a pair of scissors.
  • R v Mayers; R v Glasgow; R v Costelloe; R v Bahmanzadeh; R v P & Others [2008] EWCA Crim 1418; [2008] WLR (D) 390, [2009] 1 Cr. App - The guideline case on Anonymous Witness Evidence following the Witness Anonymity Act 2008.

 

Over the years, Andrew has won a reputation for his ability to handle heavy and complex cases. For example, as a junior he prosecuted a ten-handed gangland shooting based on circumstantial evidence. In silk for both defence and prosecution, he leads in mainstream serious crime, involving murder, drugs and fraud; but aspects of his career are outside the mainstream. He led the criminal prosecution of the Buncefield Explosion oil companies. He defended a CPS employed barrister charged with corruption offences. He has appeared in guideline cases in the Court of Appeal (e.g. in relation to Witness Anonymity). Last year he prosecuted a double murder arising from a gangland shooting. He was instructed in the defence of a Royal Marine charged with the murder of an Afghan insurgent. This year he defended a woman in a murder trial concerning the planned murder of a co-accused's partner. He is currently instructed in several other murders. He continues to prosecute and defend serious regulatory crime: e.g. manslaughter charges relating to accidents at work, etc.Over the years, Andrew has won a reputation for his ability to handle heavy and complex cases. For example, as a junior he prosecuted a ten-handed gangland shooting based on circumstantial evidence. In silk for both defence and prosecution, he leads in mainstream serious crime, involving murder, drugs and fraud; but aspects of his career are outside the mainstream. He led the criminal prosecution of the Buncefield Explosion oil companies. He defended a CPS employed barrister charged with corruption offences. He has appeared in guideline cases in the Court of Appeal (e.g. in relation to Witness Anonymity). Last year he prosecuted a double murder arising from a gangland shooting. He was instructed in the defence of a Royal Marine charged with the murder of an Afghan insurgent. This year he defended a woman in a murder trial concerning the planned murder of a co-accused's partner. He is currently instructed in several other murders. He continues to prosecute and defend serious regulatory crime: e.g. manslaughter charges relating to accidents at work, etc.CHAMBERS UK 2016

Environment

Andrew's environmental expertise includes the prosecution of the oil companies responsible for the Buncefield explosion and consequent pollution at the Hertfordshire Oil Depot, resulting in record fines and costs orders. He was instructed by the Environment Agency in relation to this prosecution. He has also defended prosecutions brought by the Environment Agency in relation to alleged unlawful deposits of waste.

Significant Cases

  • R v Total (UK) Ltd & Others - Andrew led the prosecution of five companies involved in the Buncefield disaster. Two companies pleaded guilty and the remaining three were convicted after a three month trial. This was the culmination of three years work analysing, advising and shaping the case and guiding the proceedings to their conclusion. Amongst other reactions following the trial the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and the Environment Agency (EA) issued a joint statement: 'This was the biggest and most complex criminal inquiry we have worked on together - the product of many hundreds of hours of painstaking forensic investigation. When companies put workers and members of the public at risk and cause environmental damage we will prosecute.'

Health & Safety

Andrew has defended and prosecuted cases brought by the HSE and the Environment Agency, for many years. These have included fatalities and high profile cases - for example, the Port Talbot Steels Work explosion in 2005 and the Buncefield explosion in 2010.

Per Chambers UK 2014, Andrew is 'A leading criminal law practitioner who wins plaudits for his authoritative command of complex and high-profile health and safety matters. His strong reputation in this area results in part from his major role in the litigation stemming from the 2005 Buncefield explosion. Expertise: "He has a rare mix of heavyweight criminal and regulatory law experience which really shines through."'

Significant Cases

  • R v NMSL 2015: The defence of a company charged (together with Balfour Beatty Engineering Services) with Heath and Safety Offences arising from a fatal accident at Heathrow Data Centre.
  • R v Gould 2014: The defence of a contractor involved in the construction of a new stand at the Rose Bowl Stadium, Hampshire. 
  • Operation J (2011/2012) - Andrew led a joint CPS/HSE prosecution being the culmination of a five-year investigation by the police/HSE into deaths and injuries caused by pressure damage, suffered by elderly/mentally inform residents in care homes. A limited company, a director and a chief executive faced allegations concerning systematic failures in relation thereto. The volume of evidence/material generated during the investigation presented considerable logistical challenges.
  • R v Draper (2012) - Andrew defended a Landlord in relation to a fire at rented premises which resulted in a prosecution under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
  • R v B&Q (2012) - Andrew acted for B&Q in relation to two accidents occurring at separate premises.
  • R v Total (UK) Ltd & Others - Andrew led the prosecution of five companies involved in the Buncefield disaster. Two companies pleaded guilty and the remaining three were convicted after a three month trial. This was the culmination of three years work analysing, advising and shaping the case and guiding the proceedings to their conclusion. Amongst other reactions following the trial the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) and the Environment Agency (EA) issued a joint statement:- “This was the biggest and most complex criminal inquiry we have worked on together – the product of many hundreds of hours of painstaking forensic investigation. When companies put workers and members of the public at risk and cause environmental damage we will prosecute.”
  • R v S Ltd - The defence of prosecution brought by the Environment Agency in relation to waste management  
  • HSE v R (2007) - Defending a farmer (two week trial) in relation to a prosecution by the HSE of a fatality occasioned by a fall from height.
  • HSE v Corus UK (2005/2006) - Concerning the Port Talbot Blast Furnace explosion resulting in the death of 3 workers and injuries to 17 others in November 2001, resulting in a fine and costs of £3m.
  • R v Smith-Keary & Rudkin (2003/2004) - This was a DEFRA prosecution of a 2 million pound fraud on the EEC Flax Fibre Scheme, tried in Exeter before HHJ Griggs September -December 2003. I was involved from an early stage (i.e. prior to commencement of proceedings) The case involves over 150 witnesses, and centred around the interpretation of EEC regulations, the availability of grants, and fraudulent records created by directors of the two Companies involved.
  • R v Imery Ltd & Aggregate Industries UK Ltd (2003) - Litigation involving two large Companies involving a china clay quarry fatality, resulting in financial penalties of £½ million.
  • R v Polestar Purnell Bristol Crown Court (2003) - The prosecution of a printing Company for an explosion in the printing works.
  • R v St Meryn Meat (2003) - A trial in which Andrew defended a prestigious slaughter house /meat packaging business against Regulatory offences concerning the running of a slaughter house.
  • R v Littlejohn Bathrooms (2002) -Defending breach of asbestos regulations.
  • R v Economic Insulations Ltd (2002) - Defending a company whose business was the removal of asbestos.
  • R v Suffex Services Limited & RMC Surfacing Limited (2001) - A prosecution involving a fatality resulting from a reversing truck during road works on the motorway. The issues raised include attempts made by each defendant company to pass blame to each other.
  • R v Rocdan Sea Limited (2002) - Concerning a fatality and serious injuries to others when trawler rigging collapsed though a pulley/block failure. It involved challenging the accepted cultures operating within the industry.
  • R v Walter Lawrence (2002) - A prosecution of a Water Company involving serious injuries to a child in the street upon the displacement of a water bowser.
  • R v Western Power Distribution & Others (2001) - This was case Andrew defended for SWEB (WPD) instructed by Osborne Clarke (Bristol) where an apprentice had been badly burned following absence of proper systems/training & supervision in a SWEB substation in Plymouth. WPD were fined £50,000.
  • R v Peeble Services (2001) - A case Andrew defended involving allegations relating to electrical failures in a factory.
  • R v Devonport Royal Dockyard (2001) - A case defended involving serious breaches of asbestos regulations in the Plymouth Docks.
  • R v Marshall Mono (2001) - This was a case Andrew prosecuted involving an accident at work when a work cage carrying a workman fell off a forklift.

Recommendations


CHAMBERS UK 2017

Crime

Leading Silk - Star Individual

Maintains his reputation as one of the strongest criminal practitioners on circuit, demonstrated by his election as Vice Chairman of the Bar Council 2016. He is particularly known for his involvement as both prosecution and defence counsel in extremely high-profile, serious crime matters, including multi-handed homicides and cases of false imprisonment.

Strengths: "Andrew brings an unparalleled level of forensic intensity to his case preparation and advocacy." 

Recent work: Represented Shauna Hoare, who was jointly accused with her boyfriend of murdering Bristol teenager Becky Watts. Hoare was acquitted of murder and was instead convicted of manslaughter and other offences.

Health & Safety

Leading Silk - Band 1

A renowned criminal silk who is regularly instructed to handle heavyweight health and safety matters, including those concerning fatalities. He defends and prosecutes cases, frequently appearing for the HSE and the Environment Agency.

Strengths: "Andrew Langdon is extremely bright and extremely competent."


LEGAL 500 2016

Crime

Leading silks

'Experienced in serious crime cases.’  

Regulatory, Health and Safety, and Licensing

Leading silks

'Both defends and prosecutes health and safety cases.'


CHAMBERS UK 2016

Crime

Leading Silk - Star Individual

One of the leading criminal silks on the Western Circuit. His reputation is underlined by his instruction in some of the most notable cases across the region. He defends and prosecutes serious cases and has appeared in noteworthy cases in the Court of Appeal.

Strengths: "He has all the gravitas, demeanour and intellect that one would hope for in a QC. There is no case that he could not handle. He is passionate, persuasive, forensic and delivers in a way that most barristers can only dream of emulating."

Recent work: Defended in R v Ian Gould, a case concerning a charge of gross negligence manslaughter against the managing director of the construction company that built a cricket stadium.

Health & Safety

Leading Silk (Band 1)

Both defends and prosecutes technically complex cases relating to injuries and fatalities at a work. 

Strengths: "He's an excellent advocate, super smart and very modest. He has got a lovely jury manner."

Recent work: Defended a director charged with manslaughter following the death of a worker at Hampshire Cricket Ground.


LEGAL 500 2015

Crime

Leading silks

'Juries visibly enjoy his submissions, and he is as engaging as he is persuasive’

Regulatory, Health and Safety, and Licensing

Leading silks

'He has a great judgement, and is a very persuasive advocate and a fantastic team player.'

In 2014, Andrew Langdon QC successfully defended a director who was charged with manslaughter and health and safety offences following the death of a builder at the Ageas Bowl cricket ground.


CHAMBERS UK 2015

Crime

Leading Silk (Star Individual)

The leader of the Western Circuit. He is a heavyweight crime specialist who garners universal acclaim for his masterful prosecution and defence in heavyweight murder cases and frauds.
Expertise: "He thinks through the problems in a case in a clear-sighted, analytical way, with an eye on where he wants the case to go." "He stands out as a silk. He makes the job look effortless. He really is superb."
Recent work: Instructed in the high-profile murder case of R v James and Norris, where a man wrongly suspected of paedophilia was killed and set alight.

Health & Safety

Leading Silk (Band 1)

Handles complex cases such as major fatal accidents. He is a noted criminal silk with a mixed defence and prosecution practice.
Expertise: "He has a huge command of the technical subject area; he is just the most persuasive trial advocate." "You will not find a more charming practitioner."


LEGAL 500 2014

Crime

Leading silks 'Prosecutes and defends in heavy, complex cases involving serious crimes such as murder, drugs and fraud’

Regulatory, Health and Safety, and Licensing

Leading silks


CHAMBERS UK 2014

Crime

'A formidable intellect, commentators enthuse about his seemingly effortless ability to handle even the most complex ofcriminal cases. His authoritative and assertive manner ensures he is the first choice in heavyweight crime and regulatory cases.

Expertise: "Andrew Langdon QC is an extremely experienced criminal advocate and is particularly good at dealing with vulnerable defendants." "He is one of best silks in England, with animposing intellect and imposing advocacy; you always want him on your side if you are in court. He is just impressive."

Recent work: He successfully defended the mother of a two-year-old baby who was allegedly killed by methadone poisoning.'

Health & Safety

'A leading criminal law practitioner who wins plaudits for his authoritative command of complex and high-profile health and safety matters. His strong reputation in this area results in part from his major role in the litigation stemming from the 2005 Buncefield explosion.

Expertise: "He has a rare mix of heavyweight criminal and regulatory law experience which really shines through." '


CHAMBERS UK 2013

Crime

Andrew Langdon QC is one of the undisputed stars of the Western Criminal Bar and is routinely instructed in the heaviest and most complex cases. The market is unanimous in its praise for his abilities, with interviewees commenting that he has "a very good manner with clients and solicitors."

One source attested: "Andrew is the best silk I have come across in crime - he has a fantastic mind."

Recent success: R v Corbett, concerning the issue of whether a fatal stroke suffered in the aftermath of a burglary should be treated as a case of manslaughter.

Health & Safety

Andrew Langdon QC of Guildhall Chambers is a regulatory crime specialist who both prosecutes and defends in health and safety cases. One source said that "he is really one of the best around. He is a marvellous presence in court, intelligent, and someone with bags of common sense."


Legal 500 2012

Crime

Andrew Langdon QC is frequently instructed in high-profile murder cases.

Health & Safety

Andrew Langdon QC has an impressive health and safety practice.


CHAMBERS UK 2012

Crime

The "first-rate" Andrew Langdon QC heads up the crime team and is widely seen as a "star turn." He turns his hand as easily to regulatory matters as he does to serious crime. Following the massive Buncefield prosecution, he acted for a police officer involved in the Lynette White murder trial.

Health & Safety

Andrew Langdon QC operates from Bristol's Guildhall Chambers. He concentrates his practice on crime and regulatory crime, and is praised by sources for his "robust style in court." He is seen as being "a strong advocate who is good with juries."


CHAMBERS UK 2011

Crime

'intellectual powerhouse, extremely well thought of across the circuit.' 'His approbation as one of the most outstanding silks at the moment on health and safety matters is a matter of consensus.'


LEGAL 500 2010

Crime

'a supreme tactician who never departs from the core issues'

Health & Safety

A noteworthy individual on the Western circuit, Andrew Langdon QC of Bristol's Guildhall Chambers is an "outstanding health and safety specialist" who acts for defendants and prosecutes for the HSE.


CHAMBERS UK 2010

Crime

Andrew Langdon QC is "relatively young but extremely impressive. He gets to the point faster than anyone, has a great grasp of technical aspects and is a very good team player on larger cases." He recently appeared for the prosecution in the guideline case concerning anonymous witnesses.

Health & Safety

Andrew Langdon QC - a "formidable barrister" is on the Attorney General's a list for prosecuting advocates but can also lay claim to impressive defence practices. Langdon is often involved in market-leading cases...commentators praise his "great grasp of the technical intricacies of a case," and assert that "he's a very good team player."


LEGAL 500 2009

Health & Safety

Andrew Langdon QC is "one of the foremost health and safety advocates at the bar."


CHAMBERS UK 2009

Crime

Andrew Langdon QC prosecutes and defends serious criminal cases, and recently undertook a two-month gun crime murder trial. He is described as a "young, dynamic and personable silk with excellent analytical and forensic skills."

CLERK CONTACT INFORMATION

For further information and enquiries please contact:

Crime: Lucy Northeast

Regulatory & Discipline: Lucy Northeast

Appointments

  • Recorder
  • Bencher, Middle Temple
  • Chairman-elect of Bar Council (jan 2016)
  • Chairman of Bar Council (Jan 2017)

Memberships

  • CBA

education

  • LLB, University of Bristol