Michael Lavers

Year of Call: 1990
Inn of Court: Middle Temple

Michael Lavers

An experienced barrister whose practice encompasses all aspects of criminal defence work. He has defended in a wide variety of cases involving most offences in the criminal calendar.

He is a committed advocate whose “down to earth” approach appeals to both clients and juries. A substantial portion of his clients are members of different ethnic minority groups. He grew up on a council estate in Hackney and he is able to relate to people from a wide variety of backgrounds. He is particularly adept at relating well to young defendants.

Michael is known for being tenacious, industrious and tactically astute. He is highly skilled at identifying arguable points of law and has a good success rate in excluding evidence and securing acquittals based on terminating rulings. Michael believes that high quality advocacy is built on a foundation of meticulous preparation. He is very much a “hands on” barrister who will endeavour to work closely with his professional client to ensure that his lay client’s defence is presented in its best possible light.

Significant Cases

  • R v Clarke (Matthew) [2012] EWCA Crim 1112 – Impermissible use of Section 34 CJPOA in a “false confession” case (convictions quashed).
  • R v Williams [2012] EWCA Crim 264 – Wrongful admission of evidence obtained in breach of Codes of Practice.
  • R v Bolat [2011] EWCA Crim 2771 – Wrongful  exclusion of DNA evidence; inadequate directions re tainted witness (convictions quashed).
  • R v Clarke (Scott) [2010] EWCA Crim 684 – Failure to sum up defence case properly (convictions quashed).
  • R v Dogan [2009] EWCA Crim 222 – Wrongful admission of hearsay evidence (conviction quashed).
  • R v Panesar [2007] EWCA Crim 2510 – Turnbull direction given inappropriately (convictions quashed).
  • R v Esimu [2007] EWCA Crim 1380 – What matters can properly be regarded as “facts” within Section 34 of CJPOA.
  • R v Gezen and Others [2006] EWCA Crim 3121 – Sentencing for extortion racket conducted by criminal gang.
  • R v Unlu [2003] 1 Cr. App. R. (S.) 101 – Sentencing for harbouring Class A drugs.
  • R v Andrade [2001] EWCA Crim 1471 – Misrepresentation of defence case (convictions quashed).
  • R v Parker [2001] EWCA Crim 155 – What constitutes “supporting evidence” in an identification case (conviction quashed).
  • R v Sabeddu [2001] 1 Cr. App. R. (S.) 138 – Sentencing under Section 45 of the Medicines Act 1968.
  • BA (Hons) History
  • Dip. Law
  • Criminal Bar Association,
  • Criminal Appeal Lawyers Association

Areas of Specialism


He has also been instructed as leading junior counsel (attempted murder, conspiracy to supply Class A drugs, cash-in-transit robberies, car ringing). He has considerable experience defending in multi-handed cases brought by specialist/elite police and prosecution authorities, such as SOCA, Operation Trident, the CPS Special Casework Unit and the Fraud Prosecution Service.

He also has vast experience dealing with technical evidential matters – e.g. DNA, blood spatter, fibre transfer, ballistics, cell site analysis.

He has a keen interest in appellate work. He has appeared in the Court of Appeal on numerous occasions, where he has been successful in overturning many first instance verdicts and sentences. He has often represented applicants on a pro-bono basis. He is proud of his appellate practice, which is arguably a testament to his desire to pursue and achieve just outcomes for his clients.

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