Oliver Renton

Year of Call: 2008
Inn of Court: Lincoln’s Inn

Oliver Renton


Very calm under pressure’; ‘He ensures that the client understands what is happening and puts them at their ease’ – Crime & Professional Discipline and Regulatory Law – Leading Juniors (Legal 500 – 2017)

He is regularly instructed to defend grave and complex matters, often involving serious violence. He is frequently instructed in connection with allegations of organised and gang related activity around the use and supply of drugs and weaponry, or flowing from organised acquisitive crime. He is known for combining a cool head and approachable manner with robust examination and passionate submissions. He is relied on by professional clients to provide a friendly, compassionate voice for difficult or vulnerable defendants.

He regularly appears before regulatory tribunals considering fitness to practice, particularly in respect of clinical professionals, in addition to appearing before inquests flowing from deaths within the care of the state. He has amassed considerable experience in this jurisdiction and has provided lectures and training for different regulators in a number of diverse areas, from strategic approaches to advocacy, to tackling specific areas of law.

Significant Cases

Significant Murder Cases

  • R v. Ezeoke – Allegations of a double, assassination style murder carried out in the early hours of the morning in a family home in East Finchley.
  • R v. Hajila & Others – Allegations of double attempted murder, in which one victim was stabbed 33 times within his home and repeatedly struck with cognac bottles, whilst another was stabbed 8 times and bottled.

Significant Robbery Cases

  • R v. Velyn – gunpoint robbery of a financial delivery. Negotiated a deal to turn Queen’s Evidence. Defendant received a 27 month sentence of imprisonment, whilst co-Defendant was sentenced to 12 years.
  • R v. Nacius – gunpoint robbery of a bar. The case was of particular interest in that the bar in question had been the subject of some four armed robberies, tragically culminating in the murder of one of the members of staff.

Significant Burglary Cases

  • R v. Laidlaw – First on the indictment in 8 handed conspiracy to burgle case, with further substantive counts of aggravated burglary, cash-in-transit robbery and violent robberies.
  • R v. Johnstone & Others – 8 handed conspiracy to burgle, involving around 30 burglaries and thefts of high value motor vehicles. There were allegations of serious violence been used towards home owners during the course of the burglaries, including an assault with crowbars. The total amounts stolen were alleged to have totaled in excess of a million pounds.
  • R v. Tucker – aggravated burglary. Allegation of the knife-point burglary of a hotel room in which both complainants were assaulted and injured with the knife.

Significant Drug Importation Cases

  • R v. Brown – Allegation of ‘rip-in’ importation of around 10kg of cannabis. Acquitted in spite of the admission of two previous similar convictions.
  • R v. Neo – Allegation of ‘rip-in’ importation of around 3kg of cocaine. Acquitted.
  • R v. Walters – Successfully defended an allegation stemming from the importation of around 1kg of cocaine, delivered by way of package sent to a Parcelforce depot. The Defendant had, upon arrest, repeatedly shouted ‘no comment’ to his co-Defendant. His co-Defendant, who had fought with arresting officers and apparently tried to wipe her mobile phone memory, had further refused to give the PIN code to her phone. Both were acquitted.

Significant Drug Supply Cases

  • R v. Ogu – Successful half time submission in allegation of conspiracy to supply class A drugs, following the seizure of heroin from a make up box in the Defendant’s bedroom.

Significant Firearm Offence Cases

  • R v. Ogu – Conspiracy to supply firearm – a case turning on the combination of surveillance evidence and technical evidence around telephone communications, download material, cell site analysis and ANPR.
  • R v. Byers – Allegation of possession of ammunition. Bullets were found in drawers in the Defendant’s bedroom, including in amongst underwear. Acquitted.

Significant Fraud Cases

  • R. v Ailey – Assisted Henry Grunwald QC OBE throughout two and a half month, four-handed international boiler room fraud trial.

Significant Companies Law Cases

  • R v. Webb – 4 week trial prosecuted by BIS for failure to comply with a number of requirements placed on directors in insolvency.
  • R v. Jones – Successfully defended a prosecution by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills for alleged failures to notify a creditor of a decision to strike a company off.

Significant Assault Cases

  • R v. Adesoji – Conspiracy to commit GBH with intent. Originally indicted as attempted murder. A series of allegedly connected stabbings, culminating with a car being driven at young men running down a back street in Brixton, before knocking an unrelated man from his bicycle. At this point, the front seat passenger decamped and stabbed the man knocked from his bicycle, severing his femoral artery.
  • R v. King – Violent disorder in which the defendant had been initially arrested for attempted murder. The charges stemmed from a particularly violent group attack in which various parties were attacked with a variety of weapons, said to include machetes, golf clubs and a scythe. Two complainants received blows to the head from machetes of sufficient force to leave skull fractures.
  • R v. Ogu – Originally charged with attempted murder. Downgraded on indictment to S18 wounding, possession of firearms with intent to cause fear of violence and possession for class A drugs with intent to supply. Successfully severed drugs count from S18 and firearms counts, before leading the Crown to offer no evidence on the PWITS indictment and securing acquittals after trial on the S18 and firearms charges.
  • R v. Challis – S18 wounding and kidnapping allegation, together with a co-Defendant accused of conducting a course witness intimidation. The complainant was allegedly beaten, soaked in a shower, forced into a car and driven off against his will.
  • R v. Selivanovs – Allegation of unlawful imprisonment and infliction of grievous bodily harm. The complainant and three co-accused, each alcoholic and street homeless, were alleged to have imprisoned the complainant, similarly alcoholic and homeless, in a squat, and there seriously assaulted him over an extended period.

Significant Kidnapping Cases

  • R v. Millard & Others – Allegations of the kidnapping of a young man at knife-point from a caravan. He was then allegedly made to sit in a car, in which he was repeatedly beaten and stabbed by 5 others, before being thrown into the road in the middle of a country lane and there further beaten, culminating in the breaking of his leg with an iron bar. Most of the accused were children at the time of the alleged offence.

Significant Appeal Cases

  • Attorney General’s Reference (Nos 50, 51, 52 & 53 of 2012) – An appeal against sentence on the ground of undue leniency prosecuted by the Attorney General, Dominic Grieve QC, in which the Crown admitted serious failings in the conduct of the original sentencing exercise.
  • R v. Ghebre-Amlak – Successful appeal against sentence in which the principle was confirmed that it was generally inappropriate to reduce credit for a guilty plea entered in response to otherwise apparently overwhelming evidence gleaned from a Stage 1 Streamlined Forensic Report.
  • R v. Ford – Successful appeal against sentence. The Court of Appeal reduced a sentence of 66 weeks imprisonment imposed in relation to charges of car ringing and assault, reducing the sentence by a third to 44 weeks imprisonment.

Significant Dangerous Driving Cases

  • R v. Islam – custodial sentence avoided following a fatal accident leading to the death of a driver and a passenger at speeds in excess of 130 mph.
  • R v. Tsakanikas – Case featured in the Daily Mail and on the front cover of the Cambridge News. Secured half-time acquittal of taxi driver prosecuted for driving too slowly

Significant Sexual Offence Cases

  • R. v Kaveh & Others – A case involving allegations that a group of Iranian men who were involved in the distribution of mephedrone  were operating a sex ring, controlling young women, in some cases under age, for prostitution. Kaveh acquitted on all sexual counts.
  • R v. R (a minor) – successfully defended rape allegation by 16 year old against another 16 year old. The complainant accepted having voluntarily attended the defendant’s home address and having drunk a substantial amount but defined herself as lesbian.
  • R v. Santiago – Defended allegation of assault by penetration, kidnapping, unlawful imprisonment and threats to kill. Allegation that the defendant kidnapped a former partner and her young daughter before imprisoning her for a number of hours, tying her up, threatening torture and perpetrating serious sexual assaults. The Defendant was a man with an extensive and violent antecedent history and freely admitted having serious mental health issues. Acquitted of all counts.
  • R v. Green – Historic case involving allegations of sexual assaults of increasing gravity perpetrated on a young girl by her grandfather over the course of more than a decade. Client was in his mid eighties and in poor health. The inevitable trauma upon the family of both client and complainant had to be sensitively managed, as the client was invariably accompanied to conferences and court with family members.
  • R v. Amin – Charges of trespassing with intent to commit a sexual offence and sexual assaults. Allegation that the former partner of a young girl from a traditional Islamic family forced his way into the family house before repeatedly sexually assaulting her using a knife and pliers over the course of several hours. Further allegation that he returned the following day to burgle the house.
  • R v. Madrid – Allegation of ‘casting couch’ style sexual assault by the manager of an expensive West London bar.

Significant Professional Discipline Cases

  • Shoker – Regulatory charges against a hospital’s Director of Nursing in the aftermath of the death by overdose of a consultant anesthetist within the hospital. Although wide ranging, the gravamen of the charges turned on the Registrant’s alleged failure to ensure that controlled drug processes within the hospital were safe. The case involved a large volume of disclosure and necessitated the assimilation of large amounts of material pertaining to hospital processes, chains of responsibility and corporate structures. Finding of no impairment.
  • Adebambo – Various allegations of loudly arguing with colleagues, shouting in the presence of vulnerable patients, pushing a colleague and refusing to attend to patients. The Registrant’s case was that she was the victim of bullying and victimisation that had flowed from a number of the witnesses. None of the contested charges were found proved, no impairment found. The panel were critical of the apparent attitude of certain registered witnesses.
  • Mann – Dentist facing regulatory proceedings following a conviction for causing death by careless driving.
  • Funk – Dentist alleged to have made off with payments from a patient, having extracted a number of teeth and having failed to undertake the reconstructive implant surgery promised, together with having allegedly taken payments to a personal card machine when they should have been made to the surgery employing him.
  • Ashton – Various allegations of failures to institute proper safeguarding procedures. Defence rested largely upon a combination of health matters and failings in the operation of trust IT systems. No impairment found. Bannister – Dishonesty case relating to working on 12 shifts whilst claiming sick pay. No misconduct found.
  • Ramsammy-Westmaas – 5 week case involving wide ranging allegations including allegation of dishonesty against clinical lead and deputy head teacher at a school for children with profound physical and mental impairments. Carroll – Registration appeal, following repeated periods of working, in some cases for several years, whilst not registered to do so. Appeal upheld.
  • C (a nurse) – Registration appeal, in which the Registrant had been refused registration as a result of having served a 12 month prison sentence for using a false identification document. The Registrant had since been granted political asylum, having fled Zimbabwe in very difficult circumstances. Appeal upheld.
  • Fitzpatrick – Conviction case resulting from high value benefit fraud. Avoided strike-off.
  • Gent – Case running for several weeks, involving a care home manager and former CQC inspector facing wide ranging allegations of neglect, elder abuse and poor treatment of relatives. Case marked by the challenging nature of the complainant family, who had brought similar complaints about the registrant to around twenty separate organisations.
  • Hodkinson – Mixture of errors of administration of controlled drugs, further drug administration errors and dishonesty. The bulk of charges were not found proved. No impairment found.
  • H (a nurse) – Health case in the shadow of 2 convictions for drink driving offences. Serious history of domestic abuse and mental health difficulties. Not found impaired.
  • Masih – Various charges relating to the rough treatment of patients and failure to provide proper assistance fellow professionals. Resulted in conditions of practice order.
  • K (a nurse) – Health case involving background of alcohol misuse and severe depression, including episodes of overdose. The Registrant had taken considerable amounts of sickness absence, against a background of both domestic abuse and bullying in the workplace. Not found impaired.
  • Kufa – Allegations following the death of a patient that the Registrant had not attempted to resuscitate, with further charges of sleeping on duty, rough treatment of a patient and dishonesty. Facts found not proved. It was held that the patient had been in full rigor mortis by the time of the failure to resuscitate and criticism made of certain accounts given by NMC witnesses, apparently colluding against
  • R. Mather – Allegations of dishonesty around the lack treatment of a pressure ulcer on the stump of an amputee. Various further allegations relating to the poor episode of care, shortly after qualification. Dishonesty found not proved, no impairment found.
  • Pamposa – The Registrant had repeatedly failed to declare having a recent diagnosis of tuberculosis together with current undiagnosed lung infection upon applying for work as a nurse within a prison. The registrant had admitted not having disclosed this due to a fear that, in doing so he would not have been offered the job. Avoided findings of dishonesty and of impairment.

 

 

  • BA(Hons), First Class, University of Leeds
  • MA (Distinction), University of Leeds
  • GDL (Merit), BPP
  • BVC (Very Competent), BPP
  • University Bursary for Masters Degree
  • Hardwicke Scholarship (Lincoln’s Inn)
  • Haldane Award (Lincoln’s Inn)
  • Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers

Areas of Specialism


Serious Violence

He specialises in defending matters of serious violence and as such has been instructed in double assassination style murder case, together with numerous allegations of shooting, stabbing, torture and attempted murder.

Criminal Conspiracies

He has extensive experience in defending complex criminal conspiracies – having been involved, often for the first defendant, in numerous complex and weighty conspiracies, often involving allegations of gang activity.

Professional Discipline

Since having undergone a secondment at the NMC in 2010 and having subsequently lectured different regulators on a number of diverse of law and strategy, he has developed a thriving professional discipline practice including defending clinical professionals before fitness to practice hearings or at inquests.

Fraud

He is experienced in white collar fraud, having undergone a secondment with the Serious Fraud Office and having undertaken a complex privilege review for a city firm on behalf of a major bank.

Other Details


Oliver was the Founding Director of New Internationalist Campaigners, a non-profit company providing campaigning support for ethical business and the NGO sector (circa. 2004-6).

He is a member of Reprieve and Lawyers for Liberty.