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UK Bar Guide
Firm Profile

Furnival Chambers

Firm Profile


  • Profile
  • 30-32 Furnival Street
  • London
  • Greater London
  • UK
  • EC4A 1JQ

Firm profile submitted by Furnival Chambers

THE CHAMBERS Furnival Chambers is a leading criminal set, with Oliver Blunt QC and Sally O’Neill QC as joint heads of Chambers. It specialises in the fields of serious and organised crime, including terrorism and sexual offences, financial crime and asset forfeiture, extradition and regulatory/disciplinary proceedings.

Members of Chambers are renowned for appearing in high-profile criminal cases for both the prosecution and defence. They appear at trial, in the Divisional Court, Court of Appeal, Privy Council and the Supreme Court, as well as the European Court of Human Rights and before regulatory/disciplinary panels. Many members undertake high profile work on behalf of, or against the Crown Prosecution Service, Assets Recovery Agency, Financial Conduct Authority, HM Revenue and Customs, the Serious Fraud Office, the Department of Work and Pensions and the Police.

This is a ‘go to’ set for high-profile, complex cases and those involving novel law. Members were recently involved in the first prosecution for domestic servitude within marriage (R v Ahmed) and the first prosecution for bribery under the new legislation (R v Patel & Others). Members also regularly conduct international cases, particularly in the Commonwealth and the Caribbean jurisdictions.

WORK UNDERTAKEN Chambers enjoys particular expertise in the following fields:

Serious & Organised Crime: Chambers has long been instructed in top-end work at trial and appellate levels, including the News International phone hacking (Operation Elvedon) trials, the Hatton Garden Jewellery raid, the murder of Shahena Uddin, the Stephen Lawrence murder, the Millenium Dome conspiracy, the murder of PC Sharon Beshenivsky, the murder of Sarah Payne, ‘Baby P’, the prosecution of Princess Diana’s butler, the £50m Tonbridge robbery, the ‘Witchcraft murder’, significant death row appeals and high-profile Official Secrets Act trials amongst them.

Terrorism: Members have appeared in trials including that of the Gloucester shoe bomber, the first Al Qa’eda funding prosecution post-9/11, the Afghan Stansted hijacking, the ‘Ricin’ conspiracy and a number of recent Al Qa’eda and Syria-related cases, together with significant IRA trials in the past.

Sexual Offences: Members have appeared in Operation Yewtree cases, the prosecution of Rolf Harris, the Deep Cut trial and R v Dica, as well as many serial rapist cases including the ‘West End mini-cab rapist’, the ‘M25 rapist’ and cases of historical rape and sexual abuse. Chambers has significant experience in handling LCN DNA evidence and applications on abuse of process.

Financial Crime & Asset Forfeiture: Members have appeared in a multitude of high value fraud and asset forfeiture cases, including the UBS rogue trader (Adoboli), Goldman Sachs, R v Wilkins and the first professional cricket ‘spot-fixing’ case. Members have been retained to advise and act for and against the SFO, FCA (FSA), CPS, UKBA, the Police, HMRC and public companies and high-net worth individuals in international/ multi-jurisdictional proceedings, recently including global dividend-arbitrage and withholding tax reclaim precharge investigations.

Extradition: Members advise and represent individuals and foreign governments in extradition proceedings at first instance, before the High Court, the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. Members have advised and appeared in matters involving murder and terrorism accusations, cases concerning the validity of European arrest warrants, refugee status, the ‘biggest military computer hack of all time’ into computers at NASA and the Pentagon, Nikonovs v HMP Brixton regarding retention of habeas corpus, Cretu v Romania on the status of the 2009 Framework Decision and trials in absentia and the ‘Hound of Hounslow’ flash crash trading case. A number of members recently acted in Goluchowski & Sas v Poland before Supreme Court. Charlotte Powell was a Specialist Adviser to the House of Lords Extradition Law Inquiry and Paul Garlick is an International Expert to the Organisation for Security and Co-operation.

Regulatory & Disciplinary: Chambers has vast experience in dealing with regulatory and disciplinary proceedings, before the GMC, NMC (including the Morecambe Bay Healthcare Trust case, concerning alleged misconduct of midwives leading to the death of a baby and endangerment of another’s life), GOC and SRA, amongst others. Chambers handles all nature of hybrid criminal proceedings before tribunals including the coroners court, public enquiries and mental health review tribunals. Members also appear before the Football Association commissions and other sporting regulatory authorities, both for the authorities and individuals or teams concerned.

Clerking & Practice Support: Chambers practice areas are supported by specialist clerking teams. The team as a whole is highly regarded and offers a range of counsel of appropriate call for the work concerned. This is an approachable team dedicated to providing the best solutions for client needs.