Not Guilty in EncroChat Trial – Lawtons Solicitors

25th February 2022 | Lawtons News|
Stephen Halloran headshot

Stephen Halloran

Managing Partner

We were instructed in a major trial at Bristol Crown Court involving what the South West Regional Crime Unit described as a commercial-scale drug supply case. Due to the complex nature of the evidence and issues in the case, it was prosecuted by the Organised Crime Division of the Crown Prosecution Service.

Following a 10-week trial, our client was found not guilty of the charges she faced. A significant volume of evidence had to be considered, including EncroChat evidence that brought its own challenges, both in terms of relevance and admissibility.

Stephen Halloran was the lead solicitor on the case from the outset. As a consequence of his strategic approach and by working closely with the instructed barrister (Daniel Higgins of 9 Bedford Row, London), our client, who had no previous convictions, was found not guilty.

The use of EncroChat evidence in criminal trials is still developing. As a result of Operation Venetic and the takedown of the encrypted messaging service, these cases are now starting to progress through the courts. We are dealing with a number of similar cases and the level of experience this brings in dealing with the unique evidential issues is invaluable. Through our work on these cases, we are aware of the latest case law, some of which has yet to be published.  

The case garnered a significant level of media attention due to the high profile of EncroChat operations. We were also delighted to receive a positive review of our approach from our client.       Should you require assistance with any major drug supply case, whether or not it involves EncroChat evidence, our expert team is able to assist. Please do not hesitate to get in touch.

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