AREAS OF EXPERTISE
Gareth Underhill is an experienced criminal advocate acting for the Defence in a full range of medium to heavyweight cases. He routinely acts for the Defence in a wide range of cases, from serious violence, such as murder and attempted murder, to serious drugs offences (eg, conspiracy to supply Class A), as well as kidnap, and the more frequently prosecuted sexual and public order offences, offences against the person, and Theft and Fraud Act and other financial offences.
He is also a Grade 3 Prosecutor instructed in the more serious or complex Prosecution cases. He has been led by both Queen’s Counsel and Leading Juniors in complex and lengthy trials, with a particular emphasis on serious fraud work.
Mr Underhill also undertakes Courts Martial cases around the world, representing members of the British Armed Forces.
Mr Underhill spent seven years as a senior member of the legal team in the Criminal Appeal Office, working directly with the Registrar of Criminal Appeals. As a result, he is able to offer a particular insight into the practice and procedure of the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) and is regularly assigned by the Registrar as Counsel for Appellants who are otherwise without representation. Recent work in this area has concerned advice on the prospect of obtaining leave to appeal in relation to a 2005 murder, where fresh evidence has now come to light and where cell site evidence at trial is to be re-investigated.
CASES OF NOTE
R v GREAVES & OTHERS Operation StormSouthwark Crown Court 2010 All ER (D) 299 (Mar) Junior Counsel for the Prosecution in a multi-million-pound ‘boiler-room’ share scheme fraud. This case involved international elements, with investors in the UK being unlawfully sold risky or non-existent shares from a boiler-room in Spain with back office support in Grenada and financial transactions being processed through Hong Kong. This case is now a leading authority in relation to the sentencing for money laundering offences where the money laundering is a part of the underlying criminal offence.
R v CHESHER 2008 EWCA Crim 1063 Assigned by the Registrar of Criminal Appeals to advise on the prospects of an appeal against sentence for a man sentenced to imprisonment for public protection. The man had made threats to kill his wife whilst under the influence of alcohol. The threat had not been made to his wife but to a police officer in a police van. Having been advised against an appeal by his original counsel, leave to appeal was granted and the sentence reduced to one of 18 months' imprisonment.
R v KAO & OTHERS Operation TremexCroydon Crown Court Junior Counsel for the Prosecution led by KC in relation to a £4.5million immigration fraud involving false student applications for leave to remain in the UK supported by a bogus college and immigration advisory company. The case involved a cash seizure of £2.65million, the largest such cash seizure in London.
R v A Operation TremexSouthwark Crown Court Prosecution counsel in follow-up trial to Kao & others, concerning a barrister acting as the immigration adviser to the immigration advisory company.
R v OKEI & OTHERS Croydon Crown Court Junior Counsel for the Defence in a multi-million-pound tax credit fraud.
R v D Guildford Crown Court Defence counsel in relation to an allegation of serious sexual assault on Defendant's former partner’s 18-year- old daughter. The Defendant had 18 years' service with the 7th Regiment Royal Horse Artillery, had captained the Army Rugby Sevens and represented England on the World Sevens circuit. He was acquitted after cell site evidence cast serious doubt upon the complainant's account.