Mark is a criminal law specialist. He is a Grade 4 Prosecutor and is on the Wales and the Northern circuit panels for serious crime and rape and serious sexual offences.
Mark’s experience covers a broad spectrum of criminal offences both for the defence and prosecution including murder, manslaughter, serious offences of violence, large scale public disorder including football related violence, robbery, firearms, death by dangerous driving, serious sexual offences including, rape, historical cases and the possession, taking and distribution of indecent images of children, domestic violence, drug trafficking, POCA applications, money laundering and fraud including benefit fraud.
Mark’s experience in dealing with all types of sexual offences is extensive; regularly appearing in the crown court on such matters. He has vast experience in dealing with clients charged with offences involving rape and other sexual offences including child sexual abuse allegations.
R v RW (2023): Mark, instructed by Anthony Derbyshire of the Oakes Partnership, represented the defendant charged with historic (50 years) child abuse offences. The trial took seven days, the jury were out for less than two hours and unanimously found the defendant not guilty.
R v DS (2023): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant who was convicted of rape. The case was covered in the Express and on the Cheshire Police website.
R v SS (2023): Mark, instructed by Amy Williams of Jacobs Solicitors, Ellesmere Port, represented his client who pleaded guilty to a number of sexual offences including having sexual intercourse with a dog and multiple offences of exposure. In court Mark persuaded the judge that he could justifiably step back from a sentence of immediate imprisonment and suspend the sentence. This case was covered in the Chester Standard.
R v DK (2023): Mark successfully persuaded the judge to pass a prison sentence in a case where an 18-year-old man had sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old. This case was covered in the Shropshire Star.
R v LM (2023): Mark, instructed by Hermans solicitors, represented a man charged with rape.
R v Goodier (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant for the systematic rape of a child. The defendant was sentenced to a an extended determinative sentence, comprising of a 20-year custodial sentence with a seven-year extension after the sentencing judge found him to be a dangerous offender. The case was covered in the Daily Post.
R v LF (2022): Mark successfully defended a young man charged with the rape and sexual assault of a child. The defendant had a number of mental health issues as well as learning difficulties. Mark successfully argued that his client ought to have the benefit of an intermediary to assist the court during his client’s evidence. The case called for careful client management in light of the defendant’s difficulties.
R v M Hall (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant for historic child abuse offences; it was alleged at trial that he had groomed and sexually abused one of his paper boys. After the trial the defendant was sentenced to a total of 12 years.
R v SC (2022): Mark defended his client who was charged with two counts of rape and controlling and coercive behaviour. Ultimately, after Mark made representations to the prosecution the Crown offered no evidence on the rape charges and a basis of plea was accepted on the controlling and coercive behaviour charge. The defendant was sentenced to a total of six months which allowed for his immediate release from prison having been on remand.
R v T Harman (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant for historic sexual offences dating back to the early 1970s on three victims involving torture. The sentencing exercise was extremely complex because the defendant’s offending began as a child and only one offence involved the defendant as an adult. Mark was able to assist the court with a detailed opening and sentencing schedule outlining the sentences available at the time of the commission of the offences and the relevant guidelines today. Mark was also able to assist with the very recent case law directly relevant to the sentencing of defendants for offences committed when they were a child (R v Boardman  EWCA Crim 1353, R v Forbes and Others  EWCA Crim 1388, R v Limon  EWCA Crim 39).
R v EA (2022): Prosecuted a defendant for child sexual offences involving young witnesses.
R v Cole Heimes (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant for a sexual assault upon a 17-year-old young woman and for the breach of a SOPO.
R v H (2022): Mark represented a high-profile darts player charged with a sexual assault. Instructed by Hermans Solicitors, Mark defended his client after the case was committed for sentence after a guilty plea in the Magistrates Court. The case was covered on the BBC and Sky Sports.
R v LS (2022): Mark, instructed by Hermans Solicitors, represented a female charged with multiple counts of sexual abuse having herself been groomed by her co-accused. The case was covered in the Shropshire Star.
R v AB (2022): Mark secured the acquittal of the defendant who was charged with the rape of a teenager. The issue in the trial was consent and the defendant’s reasonable belief in consent. The case involved an allegation that Mark’s client’s co-defendant (JC) had caused the young woman to engage in the sexual activity without her consent. JC was convicted. Mark advised the instruction of a psychologist whose evidence was deployed at trial and directed towards the issue of his client’s reasonable belief in consent. The defendant suffered with learning difficulties and therefore Mark advised on the instruction of an intermediary and made a successful application to have the intermediary assist the defendant and the court during his evidence.
R v GB (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the defendant who was a social worker in the 1980s for sexually and physically abusing young offenders under his care. The defendant was deemed unfit to plead and was found to have committed the acts complained about. The case was covered in the Warrington Guardian.
R v SJ (2021): Mark defendant a juvenile charged with rape and serious sexual assault in a case involving two child complainants. The defendant was someone suffering with a range of issues including autism.
R v JM (2021): Mark secured the conviction after a trial of the defendant charged with sexually grooming a child. The defendant had denied known the child was under 16 and denied the extent of the sexual activity that had occurred.
R v LH (2022): Mark secured the acquittal of a man charged with the rape and serious sexual assault of a woman in the early hours of the morning. The returned verdicts of not guilty within an hour.
R v MB (2022): Mark successfully argued that a suspended sentence was the most appropriate sentence for a defendant charged with various offences involving internet grooming and communication with children and under cover agents posing as children. The case went too the court of Appeal after the sentence was referenced by the Attorney General for being unduly lenient. Mark successfully argued that the sentence passed by the judge was not unduly lenient and the suspended sentence order remained.
R v KJ (2021): Following a five-day trial at Chester Crown Court, Mark successfully defended a man charged with multiple offences of child sexual abuse. The jury unanimously acquitted the defendant within an hour.
R v Bassett (2021): Led Robert Edwards in successfully prosecuting a case of historical child sexual abuse involving two young victims. The offences spanned a period of six years with some of the offences taking place overseas. The defendant had originally been investigated for sexual offences against the first victim in 2005, the prosecuting authority at the time decided that there was insufficient evidence to proceed; that was an error and the defendant went onto sexually abuse a second child victim. There was a substantial amount of unused material to consider from the original investigation and decisions to be made about what could be used in evidence. The delay in the case also caused difficulties in presenting the case on behalf of the prosecution and required skilled judgment as to how best to proceed. The case involved hearsay issues. The defendant was convicted of 24 counts of sexual abuse offences and received a total sentence of 20 years; he was classed as an “Offender of Particular Concern”. The case was covered in the Daily Record, on NorthantsLive, and on the Daily Advent.
R v Cooke (2021): After a 3-week trial Mark successfully prosecuted a man charged with offences involving allegations of historic sexual child abuse. The defendant had befriended and groomed a child from an early age before he began to sexually assault her over a two year period. The defendant received a sentence of 8 years imprisonment. Covered in the Chester Standard.
R v SD (2021): Mark defended a man who was charged and pleaded guilty to a number of sexual offences against a child family member. This was a difficult and sensitive case, the judge sentence SD to 8 years imprisonment.
R v WT (2021): Mark secured the acquittal of a man charged with the rape of a woman. The complainant had subsequently sadly passed away and her evidence was adduced by way of the hearsay provisions with her ABE video interview played to the jury. The case against WT collapsed after Mark ’s cross-examination of one of the prosecution witnesses who had been with the complainant prior to and after the alleged incident. Mark had successfully made an application to adduce non-defendant’s bad character evidence that related to this witness. The prosecution informed the court that they were not going to offer any further evidence and the judge directed the jury to enter a not guilty verdict.
R v PS (2020): Successful prosecution of a man charged with rape and arson. Covered in the Shropshire Star.
R v IB (2020): Successful acquittal of defendant charged with rape.
R v Edwards (2020): Prosecution of pensioner for child sexual abuse. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v Thomas (2020): Successful defence of defendant charged with historic sexual abuse of a child and rape. Involved the prosecution relying upon the defendant’s previous conviction for attempting to meet a child following sexual grooming, which went before the jury.
R v Craig (2020): Successful prosecution of defendant charged with historic child sexual offences.
R v Kingsley (2020): Successful prosecution of a man charged with child sexual abuse after a four-day trial.
R v Steele (2020): Prosecution of a man who was jailed for five and a half years and ordered to register with the police as a sex offender for life. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v Burton (2020): Successful prosecution of a man charged with rape and sexual assault of two victims. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v KG (2019): successful defence of a man charged with rape. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v A (2019): Successful defence of a Lithuanian man charged with sexual assault and assault. Covered by the Leader Live.
R v White (2019): Successfully persuaded the court to suspend a sentence of imprisonment for a client who was charged with possessing thousands of indecent images of children. The case was covered in the Leader Live.
R v Howarth (2019): Successful prosecution of defendant for historic serial child sex offences. The case gained coverage on the BBC and in the Daily Post.
R v Ieuan Jones (2019): Successful prosecution of historic child sexual abuse. The case was covered by The Daily Post.
R v Aldeii (2019): Defence of a man charged with stranger attempted rape and other sexual offences. The defendant was cleared of the more serious charge of attempted rape. The case was covered in The Leader.
R v F (2018): Defence of woman charged with sexual offences. The case was covered in the Manchester Evening News.
R v L (2018): Successful defence of client charged with historic child sexual offences.
R v Bishop (2018): Successful prosecution of a man charged with historic sexual abuse – sentence of 22 years. Covered in the Chester Standard.
R v Erol (2018): Successful defence of man charged with sexual assault.
R v Carson (2018): Successful defence of man charged with multiple rapes and sexual assaults.
R v Cartwright (2018): Successful prosecution of historic sexual abuse. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v Ieuan Jones (2018): Successful prosecution of historic sexual abuse. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v O’Neill (2018): Successfully prosecuted defendant for rape and child abuse spanning 23 years and six victims. The defendant was sentenced to 25 years plus an extended licence of one year. The case was covered in the Chester Standard.
R v Dean (2018): Successful defence of man charged with male rape.
R v Lee (2018): Successful prosecution of defendant charged with two sets of sexual offences. After a successful joinder application and response to a defence severance argument the defendant was convicted after trial of domestic violence and the rape of one victim and two sexual assaults of a work colleague; he received a sentence of 12 years.
R v Crowther (2018): Successful prosecution of a teaching assistant for multiple rapes of a child u-13 sentenced to 17 years. The case involved applications under s.41 of the YJCE Act 1999 and non-defendant’s bad character as well as an application to adduce evidence of the defendant’s bad character in the form of internet searches for indecent images of children (expert evidence was called on behalf of the prosecution). The case was covered in the Daily Post.
R v Ilina (2018): Successful defence of Romanian immigrant charged with rape.
R v Waite (2017): Suspended sentence order for client who pleaded guilty to attempting to cause a child to engage in sexual activity (having successfully negotiated with the prosecution a plea to this single offence, the indictment having contained a further count of attempting to meet a child after sexual grooming.
R v O’Donnell (2017): Successful prosecution of child sex offender.
R v Marsden (2017): Defence of man charged with historic child sex offences.
R v Dimmick (2017): Successful defence of a teacher charged with sexually assaulting a pupil. The case was covered in the Daily Post.
R v Michael Leaberry (2017): Defended a man who went on the run after raping a young child. The case was covered on the BBC.
R v Buckle (2017): Defended a man who pleaded guilty to attempting to arrange a child sex offence, defendant given a suspended sentence order.
R v Abdulgabar (2017): Successful prosecution of “Badoo” date rape allegation, defendant sentenced to 9 years.
R v Kieron Brookes (2017): Successful defence of a man charged with attempted rape and assault by penetration involving two complainants.
R v Terrence Mackay (2017): Successful prosecution of Tinder date rapist. Covered in the Warrington Guardian.
R v Jones (2017): Successful defence of a driving instructor who was accused of sexually assaulting nine of his pupils. The case and not guilty verdict were covered in the Macclesfield Express.
R v Abbott (2017): Defended a client who pleaded guilty to serious child sexual abuse. Received coverage on the BBC.
R v S (2017): Successfully defended allegations of historic child sexual abuse.
R v Foster (2016): Successfully prosecuted the defendant for rapes and sexual assaults; he was sentenced to 12 years.
R v M Evans (2016): Defended a man on multiple charges of causing a person to engage in sexual activity without consent; the defendant was acquitted.
R v Davis (2016): Defended in a case where accused was charged with rape; defendant was acquitted.
R v El Marghani (2016): Defended a man charged with sexually assaulting a child in a swimming pool; defendant acquitted.
R v Walsh (2016): Defended a man charged with rape and sexual assault of a child under 13, defendant acquitted.
R v Savas (2016): Defended a man charged with double rape; defendant acquitted.
R v Parry (2016): Prosecuted a man who was jailed for nine years for raping and sexually assaulting a vulnerable 18-year-old woman. Read the article in the Chester Chronicle.
R v Narciso Devereux (2015): Defended a doctor who the prosecution alleged had sexually assaulted his patient whilst on duty in the emergency department. He was unanimously acquitted after a trial lasting five days.
R v Raymond Jones (2015): Defence case involving allegation of historic sexual abuse going back between 35 and 49 years.
R v Eifion Evans (2015): Defended a teacher accused of sexually assaulting a young man. Read the report in the Daily Post.
R v David Parsonage (2015): Defended a man who was cleared of nine charges including indecent assaults, two common assaults and causing a child to engage in sexual activity. He was found guilty of a single offence of indecent assault dating back to the 1990s. The verdict and supervision order were reported in the Daily Post.
R v Charnley (2015): Prosecuted a man accused of grooming and assaulting a 12-year-old girl. Two-year and 10-month jail sentence. Reported in the Daily Post.
R v Owain Owen (2015): Prosecuted a man accused of sexual offences against girls. 10-year jail sentence. Reported on the Mirror Online.
R v Wilson (2015): Rape of a child. Reported on the ITV news website.
R v MO (2023): Mark, instructed by Anthony Derbyshire of the Oakes Partnership, represented his client who was charged with the supply and possession with intent to supply Class A and B drugs. Mark successfully persuaded the sentencing judge to pass a suspended sentence after submitting that the defendant fell into the “lesser role” on the guidelines, was young, and there had been a very long delay.
Operation Toxic (2022): Mark defended his client for his role in a county lines drug operation. Mark was able to successfully argue the appropriate role within the sentencing guidelines.
Operation Stargazer (2022): Mark defended his client who was alleged to have played a leading role in a county lines drug operation, which the judge described as a “well-run operation”. The case was covered in the Warrington Guardian.
R v RC (2022): Mark was able to secure a sentence of 30 months for his client charged with dealing Class A controlled drugs.
R v Jayven W (2020): A sentence of 2 years and 8 months for the supply of class A drugs. The case was covered in the Derby Telegraph.
R v KJ (2020): Successful acquittal of client charged with possessing 2kg of cannabis with intent to supply. It was argued that the defendant had intended to purchase “legal” cannabis in order to sell in his Vape shop, after a lengthy investigation the prosecution accepted the defence arguments which led to the client’s acquittal.
R v Cusato (2020): Acted for one of the defendants in Operation Olympia. Covered in the Chester Standard.
R v Natalie Edwards (2016): Defended individual for conspiracy to supply class A drugs who was part of what the prosecution alleged was an organised crime gang. Read the press report.
R v Philip Ashley (2009): Successfully argued a reduction of the minimum term for possession of a handgun.
Murder, attempted murder and serious violence
R v CP (2023): Mark, instructed by Freya McGuinness of Hanratty & Co Solicitors, represented his client who was charged with double attempted murder. Mark advised the instruction of expert medical reports necessary to inform the court of his client’s developmental disorder and how that impacted upon his culpability. Mark negotiated with the prosecution for a reduction in the level of the charges that more appropriately reflected the evidence to offences of wounding with intent. In court Mark successfully argued that this was a full credit case. This case was covered by the Daily Post.
R v G & L (2022): Mark successfully prosecuted the parents of a 3-week-old baby, for inflicting GBH and child cruelty leaving their child with life changing injuries including fractured skull and legs, retinal injuries and a bleed on the brain. Multiple experts and medical practitioners provided reports in the fields of paediatric neurology, neurosurgery, ophthalmology, radiology, histology, and paediatrics. The evidence pointed towards the cause being shaken baby syndrome with skull impact. Mark advised the instruction of one expert to consider the totality of the expert evidence. After the close of the prosecution case G changed his plea to guilty. Covered in the Chester Standard.
R v GT (2022): Mark represented a defendant who was formally acquitted of all alleged offences of serious violence against his partner.
R v DM (2021): Mark, led by Benjamin Myers QC of Exchange Chambers, defended the defendant for murder. The case involved complex medical issues, the defendant suffering from severe autism. The court heard from experts in the fields of psychiatry and psychology.
R v AM (2021): Led by Benjamin Myers QC of Exchange Chambers, Mark secured a verdict of not guilty to murder for AM after trial at Chester Crown Court. The allegation of murder arose from the death of a 3-month-old baby in July 2020 from catastrophic head and brain injuries. AM was the baby’s father.
The case turned on expert evidence of pathology, neuropathology, neurosurgery, histopathology and radiology. This evidence disclosed an assault at the time that AM was in sole charge of the victim, and evidence of over fifty rib fractures to the victim that had been inflicted over the course of her tragically short life. These injuries occurred against a background of very difficult domestic circumstances for AM, in light of which the defence maintained that any unlawful assault constituted manslaughter and not murder. The jury returned a verdict of not guilty on the charge of murder, finding AM responsible for the lesser offence of manslaughter instead.
Mark was instructed by Mark Jackson of Cohen Cramer Solicitors, Leeds.
R v O (2021): Mark successfully defended his client who was charged with inflicting GBH and an ABH. In a 4 day trial at the Chester Crown Court the prosecution alleged that on two separate occasions the defendant had assaulted his partner, the first leading to a split lip, the second a broken cheekbone. The jury returned with verdicts of not guilty after 30 minutes.
R v SS (2021): Mark, led by Benjamin Myers QC from Exchange Chambers, successfully secured the acquittal of SS who was charged with the attempted murder of a man brutally struck about the face and head with a claw hammer leading to life changing injuries. The case against SS involved evidence of multiple confessions, forensic analysis of blood staining and DNA, and a hostile co-defendant. After a trial of three weeks at the Crown Court at Chester, the jury found SS not guilty. The co-defendant was convicted of attempted murder. Covered in the Chester Standard and on the CPS website.
R v Mayers (2020): Defence junior in murder trial involving two defendants. Covered on the BBC.
R v Andrews (2020): Successfully prosecuted defendant charged with attempted murder after five-day trial. The defendant received a sentence of 18 years. Covered in Chester Live and the Chester Standard.
R v L Jones (2020): Defence of man charged with section 18 offences. Covered in the Daily Post.
R v Stewart (2020): Defence of man charged with attempted murder. Successfully negotiated a plea to the lesser charge of section 18 wounding. Covered in the Chester Standard.
R v McArdle, Lewis and K (2020): Led junior in the prosecution which led to the conviction of three defendants charged with conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm in a vicious assault on a woman. The assault resulted in life-changing injuries after her face was repeatedly slashed with a knife after being lured to a quiet Oswestry park. Covered on West Mercia Police website.
R v W (2019): 18-year-old client charged with attempted murder in a drive-by shooting incident; he was acquitted. The case was covered in the Manchester Evening News.
R v Scragg (2017): Acted as junior counsel defending CS who was jointly accused for the murder of a man in Crewe. The defence was cut throat, the defendant’s co-accused was convicted of murder, the jury failed to reach a verdict on SC. SC then pleaded guilty to manslaughter and received a sentence of seven years. The case was covered on the BBC and ITV as well as local press including the Stoke Sentinel and Crewe Chronicle.
R v Mancini (2017): Successful defence of female charged with assault, robbery and false imprisonment.
R v Cunningham (2017): Successful defence of the manager of a nightclub jointly charged with a doorman for inflicting GBH.
R v Garrod (2015): Prosecuted a man for manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility. The case was reported on the BBC.
2015: Prosecuted a man who was found guilty of attempted murder. Click here for Daily Post article and follow-up about sentencing.
R v Beadell (2014): Drug related murder. Click here for Macclesfield Express Article.
R v Benjamin & Others: Large scale conspiracy to commit cash in transit robberies. Click here for Liverpool Echo Article.
Fraud and Theft
R v Illie & Others (2021): Successfully prosecuted an OCG of six Romanian nationals who ran a planned and professional shoplifting operation across the length and breadth of the UK. They stole goods from Asda to a value in excess of £160K. They were jailed for a total of over 20 years. The case was covered in the Warrington Guardian, the BBC and the Manchester Evening News.
R v Cole (2019): Client charged with burglary of a dwelling, acquitted after a submission of no case to answer.
R v Wlodarczyk (2018): Represented a defendant charged with conspiracy to defraud in a “crash for cash” case.
R v Meakins (2017): Defence of client charged with conspiring with others in a large scale fraud said to be worth over £750K. Coverage in the Daily Post.
Operation Desert (2014): Large scale conspiracy to steal.
R v Hather & others (2014): Conspiracy to steal motorcars. Click Here for Warrington Guardian Article.
R v Pinnington (2012): Conspiracy to steal. Click Here for Daily Post Article.
R v Fitzgerald and Tudor (2014): Conspiracy to launder the proceeds of crime
R v Khan & others: Large scale money laundering operation. Click Here for Manchester Evening News Article.
Death by dangerous driving
R v ME (2023): Successfully secured a suspended sentence order for his client who was charged with causing the death of his 18-year-old friend by careless driving. Instructed by Julian Farley of the Oakes Partnership. The case was covered on ITV, in the Daily Mail and the Manchester Evening News.
R v Hyland (2020): Successfully prosecuted a defendant for causing the death of a motorcyclist for careless driving. The case was covered in the Cheshire Standard.
R v Bacon (2020): Represented client charged with causing death by careless driving, secured a suspended sentence order. Covered in the Manchester Evening News.
R v Bonwick: Prosecution of a man who caused caused the death of one man and the serious injury to another as a result of his dangerous driving. Read the press report.
R v DO (2023): Mark, instructed by Lisa Burrows of Hermans Solicitors, represented his client who was charged with breaching a restraining order, section 4 harassment, intentional strangulation and assault occasioning actual bodily harm. DO had pleaded guilty to breaching a restraining order in the Magistrates Court and had therefore been recalled on licence. Mark successfully sought disclosure of phone records which included a 3,700 page download containing messages between the parties. Mark’s work along with the assistance of Miss Burrows enabled Mark to negotiate a plea to a common assault, and the offences of harassment, intentional strangulation and ABH were not proceeded with. This led to a favourable sentence which will be completed prior to the defendant’s release from his previous sentence for which he has been recalled.
R v LK (2023): Mark defended a man originally charged with robbery and threatening another person with a bladed article. Mark successfully negotiated a plea to the simple possession of a bladed article. His client, who was subject to the minimum prescribed term for a second offence of possessing a bladed article, received a sentence of eight months.
R v LA (2021): Mark defended the defendant charged with affray, possession of a knife. After a trial at the Mold Crown Court the jury returned verdicts of not guilty.
R v WD (2021): Mark secured the acquittal of the defendant jointly charged with the kidnap of a child. It was after Mark’s cross-examination of the complainant during a section 28 hearing that the prosecution reviewed the evidence and on the basis there was no longer a realistic prospect of a conviction offered no further evidence and a formal not guilty verdict was entered.
R v Clark (2019): Successful prosecution of offender charged with controlling and coercive behaviour and domestic violence related offences.
R v H (2019): Persuaded a judge to suspend a sentence of imprisonment for a section 20 assault upon his partner. The case involved the instruction of a psychologist for a client who had learning disabilities and a low IQ. We were able to establish that the client had also been the victim of domestic abuse at the hands of his partner.
R v Day (2019): Prosecuted for arson and stalking. The case has been covered by the BBC, BBC North West Tonight (begins at 3.10), ITV Granada, Liverpool Echo and Northwich Guardian.
R v Hughes: Client spared jail for dangerous driving.
R v Gurney: Dangerous driver escaped prison term.
R v Jones (2016): Defended in a case of dangerous driving. Defendant received a suspended sentence. Read the press report.