“A firm dedicated to the old-fashioned virtue of conscientious hard work in pursuit of their clients interests”.
Legal 500 – Ranked as Tier 1 (Crime), Independent Legal Directory
The last ten years have seen an explosion of investigations and prosecutions for sexual offences. The era of sexual offence allegations being ignored or brushed under the carpet has, rightly, passed. During that time, the sexual offence solicitors at Hodge Jones and Allen have been at the cutting edge of representing those accused of such offences.
Our award winning sexual offences team is led by Nigel Richardson, author of the go-to guide on the subject: Sexual Offences – A Practitioner’s Guide. Ranked as Band 1 in Chambers and in the prestigious Legal 500 Hall of Fame, Nigel is the acknowledged expert in this field and perhaps the only solicitor in the country who acts exclusively in sex offence cases.
At Hodge Jones and Allen, we use our legal knowledge and experience to advise and represent clients charged with a range of sexual offences including:
However, we don’t just treat our cases as legal problems. Being accused of a sexual offence will have implications for every area of your life. As part of a multi-disciplinary practice we can also provide expert advice on the effects on your employment, on your relationships (including access to children) and even on the possibility that the accusation might be a prelude to bringing a civil claim.
We can advise you on publicity and reputation, and for those clients in a professional field we can we can advise you on any regulatory matters that arise, even from an accusation alone. If you feel you do have a sex-related problem, we can refer you to the very best counsellors and therapists in this field.
Our team can call on a wealth of experience to help. We have defended clients accused of every different sexual offence in a huge range of circumstances. We provide excellent but straightforward advice in this complex area of law. What sets us apart is our ability to understand the crisis our client is facing whilst fighting tenaciously for their rights.
H was a wealthy Arab sheikh accused of rape and assault on his girlfriend. He absconded while on bail but the trial went ahead in his absence. Despite the fact he wasn’t there, by careful case preparation and good cross-examination, we secured an acquittal from the jury.
M was an octogenarian ex-headmaster who was charged with indecent assault on some of his young pupils in the 1980s. The evidence against him was very strong and we advised him to make admissions and plead guilty. This advice, and a very good package of mitigation, allowed the judge to give a non-custodial sentence.
We represented D, a GP accused of sexual assault on four of his patients. By the time he came to us, he had already been convicted of other similar offences and was serving a 10 year sentence. Despite the fact that the jury were told about his previous convictions, he was acquitted of all charges.
Important case in which the prosecution of our client for rape collapsed after we showed that crucial photographs were on the complainant’s phone and had not been disclosed. This was one of the cases which sparked an outcry about failures of disclosure by the police and CPS.
Those accused of sexual offences are often strangers to the criminal justice system. Our clients are frequently professional people who have never before been on the wrong side of a police investigation.
We want to be involved as soon as we can – before any police questioning if possible. What is said in that initial interview is crucial to the future of the case.
However, clients often come to us after they have been advised by a non-specialist legal advisor at the police station and there is still plenty we can do.
It is worth remembering that sexual offence cases are prioritised by the prosecuting authorities who put resources and effort into getting convictions. They have their own specialists – specially trained police officers investigate sex allegations which are dealt with by the Rape and Serious Sexual Offence (RASSO) team at the Crown Prosecution Service. It stands to reason that those accused of such offences need their own experts in the field: the consequences of getting it wrong can be catastrophic.
Representation at an early stage is often key as decisions made at the outset can have huge importance. We can help you by: Advising you on whether to answer questions and, if so, how best to get your point across.
Many solicitors adopt a ‘wait and see’ approach. However, we may be able to track down witnesses, secure CCTV or video footage or even examine phones and computers.
Building up a dossier of reasons why you should not be charged and presenting it to the prosecution at the right time. At this stage our aim is to do everything we can to prevent your case from going to court; if that is not possible, we want to have started to prepare your defence.
Some cases will inevitably end up before the court. We examine the case in detail, look for the inconsistencies, challenge the prosecution evidence, help our clients to think strategically and prepare the case meticulously. We ensure our clients have the right legal team around them to fight their case. Over the years we have identified the best barristers and experts in this field and work closely with them to secure the best possible outcomes.
Defending sexual offences is a specialist skill, very different from general criminal defence. Core issues are the disclosure of ‘unused material’, an examination of the police investigative process and the credibility of witnesses. It is crucial that the accused person presents themselves properly, both to police in interview and giving evidence in court, if it comes to that.
We have dealt with many cases where the allegations are years, and sometimes decades, old and count ourselves experts in this niche area. In these historic sexual offences, the passage of time does not prevent prosecution but it can make the allegations far more complex.
We know how to look for flaws in the police investigative process or collusion between witnesses. We know the law not just as it stands now, but as it was when the allegation was said to have occurred. And we are very experienced in dealing with elderly people and their families who are facing these difficult situations.
If someone has been convicted of a sexual offence and maintains their innocence, we can help. We have experience of examining convictions, looking for fresh evidence and advising whether there are grounds to show that the conviction is unsafe.
As the foremost legal experts in sex offence law, we advise organisations and institutions as well as individuals. This can cover a range of issues from the possession or publication of risky or potentially indecent material, to the laws surrounding the sex industry or the employment of staff accused of sexual offences. We are a multi-discipline practice which means that we often work with our colleagues who have expertise in other fields of law.
Our top ranking team have years of experience representing the innocent. We stand up to the prosecution who will always be represented by an experienced solicitor or barrister. We know how to fight and win cases.
Representing you at the Police Station or in Court If you need urgent representation call us today. Share a few details with us and we’ll let you know how we can help you.
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|Phone:||0808 231 6369|
|Fax:||020 7388 2106|
|Address:||Hodge Jones & Allen Solicitors 180 North Gower Street London NW1 2NB|