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The Team

Our team of experts offer world-class services to all our clients.



Abbas Lakha QC

undefined “Abbas Lakha QC got me through my proceedings with his expertise, professionalism and constant communication. Abbas is approachable, constantly available on a daily basis and responded directly to my questions promptly and professionally and allayed any concerns.”


Abbas Lakha QC is regarded as one of the most accomplished advocates of his age, having taken Silk at 40, and is experienced at the highest level of the Criminal Bar. He has a wide-ranging practice covering serious crime, regulatory work, asset forfeiture and money laundering. He increasingly appears in the High Court and Tax Tribunals. He is rated in Chambers UK and Legal 500 directories as a leader in the fields of international crime, murder, terrorism, financial crime and asset forfeiture and is noted for his detailed preparation, incisive examination and strong jury advocacy.

John King

“As a client of John King’s, I found him to be meticulous, extremely accessible but above all consistently professional in every aspect of representing my business and in particular when dealing with third parties on my behalf.”

-Jean Curran, Founder Just Create (Europe) Ltd

John is a civil and criminal barrister. A highly regarded negotiator, he now focuses mainly on his civil practice – which is expanding into contract negotiations. Over the years, he has handled many high-profile and high-value cases, often as a leading junior. John is one of a very small number of advocates who has taken a case through the entire court system in England, then through the European court structure – culminating in a hearing before 22 judges in the Grand Chamber of the ECHR.

To find out what our clients think of John King, please follow the testimonials link on the right.


Michael Chambers

“Across the past 5 + years I have instructed Michael in dozens of cases of varying complexity including serious sexual assault, fraud, serious violence, murder and drugs related offending. He has always provided a very professional personalised service and my clients and I have been very impressed by his attention to detail and his ability to put clients at their ease” Defence Solicitor Advocate

Michael has a mixed general criminal, family and civil practice.

His criminal practice covers all areas of crime including gang related serious violence, public order disturbances and drug related allegations; fraud, including benefit fraud; domestic violence and sexual offences including rape and serious sexual assault.

His civil advice draws upon his 15 years’ experience of working in the commercial sector, before retraining as a barrister in 2003. He has advised and represented clients in defamation suits, applications for injunctions and several breach of contract cases.

He also has a rapidly developing family practice including private children law, financial orders and confiscation proceedings.

He is a witness and case preparation trainer for the UK’s leading legal training company where he has run numerous courses for professionals involved in the legal system as witnesses and/or investigators.

Before qualifying as a barrister Michael spent over 20 years in advertising in London and New York where he was responsible for the negotiating, planning and buying of multi-million pound television advertising campaigns for major companies including Fiat, Twentieth Century Fox Films, Procter and Gamble and Nationwide Building Society.

Notable Cases
R v G (June 2019)
G, a man of good character acquitted of all nine counts of criminality associated with his alleged abusive relationship with his former partner over 3+ years during which it was asserted that he was controlling and coercive, repeatedly assaulted her and controlled her finances and social life, and made repeated racist threats against her and members of her family.

Although it was a very successful result, the effect of these proceedings on the defendant, his children and his family has been dramatic and is ongoing.

T and L (May 2019)
Instructed to advise T and L in a multi-million £ contractual dispute with vulture capitalists who attempted to capitalise on T and L’s vulnerable short-term financial position to extract maximum shareholder value and control for a nominal investment and ambiguous future investment commitments. The advice  and conferences held was realistic and pragmatic, constructive and commercially focussed and included consideration of liquidation, insolvency, fraud, breaches of contract and directors duties pursuant to the Companies Act.

Represented the respondent who faced multiple allegations of domestic violence across a number of months in a rapidly deteriorating relationship. At the contested fact-finding hearing all the allegations were rejected by the court.

Private children law
Instructed in cases involving:

  • Allegations of domestic violence, including successfully represented the respondent in a fact-finding hearing who faced multiple allegations of domestic violence;
  • Cultural and religious concerns;
  • Education concerns;
  • Parental responsibility agreements;
  • Child arrangements orders including prohibited steps orders and specific issues orders.

Financial orders
Instructed in cases involving:

  • Financial Orders including negotiations in relation to the matrimonial home at FDR;
  • Represented respondent in late instructed FDR case in which parties disputed the accuracy of the schedule of assets.

Confiscation proceedings

  • Representing third party interests in the former matrimonial home that the prosecution seeks to confiscate as part of the ex- husbands proceeds of crime.

Lennart Poulsen

Lennart is an excellent advocate, praised for ability to analyse large volumes of complex information, identify the key issues and understand his client’s needs.

Lennart accepts instructions in family proceedings including nuptial agreements and relationship planning, family ADR, financial remedies on divorce or dissolution and preservation of assets.


Lennart acts for clients across the full range of family law including:

  • Pre/post-nuptials
  • Divorce or dissolution
  • Cohabitation
  • Civil Partnerships
  • Financial remedies on divorce or dissolution
  • Financial remedies on preservation of assets
  • Children law: public and private
  • International aspects of family law


Advises corporate clients and other entities both in the UK and abroad on data protection and privacy, particularly in respect of compliance with the GDPR. This includes:

  • Advising on specific responsibilities under GDPR
  • Data protection policies
  • Drafting controller-processor contracts
  • Contracts involving third party processors outside the EU
  • Contracts involving third party processors in jurisdictions without an adequate level of data protection as determined by the EU Commission
  • Cross-border transfer of data
  • Data protection impact assessments
  • Advice on breach and possible supervisory authority investigations
  • Advice and representation before the ICO or other supervisory authority

Recent work
Advised a corporate client in the Cayman Islands and drafting agreements involving the transfer of data to a jurisdiction without an adequate level of data protection.

Presenting at a seminar for barristers and solicitors on their key duties in respect of data protection under the GDPR and Data Protection Ac 2018

A growing civil and commercial practice built from previous experience as a solicitor at Clifford Chance has also led clients to seek him out for his expertise in reputation management and defamation law.

Lennart combines a thriving international practice with many years of experience in cases before different international tribunals with a Crown Court practice in which he is highly regarded by solicitors and lay clients.

He is regularly instructed in a wide range of serious criminal matters as well as Public Inquiries.

He is an accredited Vulnerable Witness advocate.



year of call:2006


Aneurin Brewer

“I was very happy with Mr Brewer. He did an outstanding job in court and spotted things in the evidence that no one else had noticed. He was very polite, professional and easy to get along with. If I had to go to court again I would definitely want him fighting for me!” -X

Aneurin has developed a deserved reputation as a tenacious, conscientious defence advocate – with a down-to-earth demeanour, and a talent for winning the trust of clients and juries.

He is a specialist in lengthy, multi-handed and factually complex trials, involving allegation of drugs supply and fraud, both as a led junior and increasingly in his own right.


A jury advocate first and foremost, Aneurin also thrives on technical legal argument. As well as his drugs supply and fraud caseload, he often acts in the context of road traffic, drink drive and road fatality offences.

Read more about background and expertise

He has also developed a particular expertise in advising on and conducting private prosecutions and has lectured on this specialist subject.

In addition to his busy trial practice, Aneurin regularly advises on and conducts appeals against conviction and/or sentence, with many notable successes (see case list).

Outside of the civilian context, Aneurin regularly appears in courts martial and on behalf of service personnel in civilian courts.

To find out what our clients think of Aneurin, please click the testimonials link on the right.


Artis Kakonge

Called to the Bar in 2006.

Family, Cohabitation and Divorce Law

Artis provides advice and representation to individuals coping with relationship breakdown and parents, stepparents, grandparents, and other concerned relatives seeking to make arrangements in the best interests of a child. Artis also helps individuals and couples looking to start or grow their family.

Where proceedings are emotionally charged and it is difficult to take decisions effectively or navigate proceedings on your own, delay and errors of judgment can ensue. The longer proceedings are, the more they take an emotional and financial toll.

Artis combines her experience working within private practice, local government child protection, internationally and in business to navigate you through the family justice system, consider whether there is an alternative to court proceedings and where proceedings are unavoidable, to help you define and implement a clear case strategy. This achieves the best possible outcome for her clients and at the earliest possible opportunity.

Artis can help with:

  • Divorce, dissolution and financial remedies on separation
  • LGBTQIA family law related issues
  • Fertility law and Surrogacy
  • Child arrangements (contact, sole or shared residence);
  • Enforcement of contact orders
  • Disputes around relocation, holiday travel, name change, medical treatment, religion and schooling (specific issue or prohibited steps orders)
  • International Child Abduction
  • Local Authority involvement (child protection/safeguarding concerns)
  • Adoption and special guardianship applications
  • Domestic violence injunctions
  • FGM and Forced Marriage protection orders

Mental Capacity Law

Artis can help with the management of property and welfare affairs for vulnerable persons who lack capacity. This includes applications to the Court of Protection for lasting powers of attorneys and deputyship orders. Artis is also experienced in dealing with DOLS.

Reported cases

Re TY Adoption (Jamaica) [2019] EWHC 2979 (Fam)

Re A (A Child: Female Genital Mutilation: Asylum) [2019] EWHC 2475 (Fam)

Re MOD and Others (Deprivation of Liberty) [2015] EWCOP 47



Yogesh Patel

Yogesh is a partner a leading UK Litigation Solicitor and Higher Court Advocate (client) who has worked defending clients for the last 25 years. He has extensive experience in dealing with complex criminal cases including sexual offences, white collar business and financial crime, disciplinary and regulatory work, private prosecutions, confiscation, extradition and related offences including the most severe criminal cases. He also has expertise in environmental law.

Yogesh is a leading lawyer in the UK edition of Super Lawyers and a recommended lawyer in the Legal 500 and Chambers UK.

Yogesh has a reputation for his dedication, fight and rigorous attention to detail and he is a lawyer you want on your side.

Yogesh has a reputation for success in cases which others would shy away from and frequently works alongside some of the country’s most prominent and leading QCs and Barristers.

Yogesh has been a Duty Solicitor for over 20 years and regularly appears in the Magistrates and Crown Court. He is a member of the Defence Extradition Lawyers Forum and  a member of the Private Prosecution Lawyers Association.


Riad Ahmed

Riad Ahmed is an award winning highly respected and experienced fraud, regulatory and criminal defence lawyer within the jurisdiction of England & Wales, UK specialising in serious and complex criminal and regulatory investigations and prosecutions brought by various UK authorities including: the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS); the National Crime Agency (NCA); the Serious Fraud Office (SFO); HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC); the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) amongst numerous others. He built his reputation primarily on defending clients facing fraud, money laundering and business crime (White Collar) allegations.

Riad is especially regarded by his loyal client base of individuals, professionals, directors and companies alike who value his expertise, discretion, high standards of client care and tenacious attitude in defending their cases.  This is supported by his solid track record of defence wins ranging from: arguing that cases should have no further action by investigators or be discontinued by prosecutors; as well as preparing successful abuse of process legal arguments and securing acquittals at trial. Indeed, Riad has previously built his client base up purely through reputation and personal recommendations and is regularly referred serious and complex defence matters by UK and international law firms, barristers’ chambers and other professionals whose clients require Riad’s expert legal advice and input. His excellent connections also ensure that the country’s leading defence barristers and experts, as well as specialist interpreters for those clients for whom English is not their first language, are available to him and his clients in order to assist in vigorously defending their cases.

Riad passionately believes in the tenet that a party is “innocent until proven guilty” and defends each and every client ceaselessly in this aim. He is also a master strategist when it comes to case management, trial strategy and damage limitation and is equally sensitive and mindful when representing co-accused, especially family members and business colleagues. Riad is best instructed before or during any investigation stage so he may have the opportunity to liaise with his counterparts in order to better deal with matters effectively and is often contacted to discuss matters, confidentially, during this time. Due to demand, Riad is attached to a number of leading UK law firms as a Senior Consultant Solicitor.

Practice Areas

The types of cases that Riad defends vary and include high profile and high value, national and international matters such as:

  • Conspiracies including to defraud, to launder money, etc;
  • Criminal frauds including: banking, charity, carousel, boiler room, investment, mortgage, insurance, land banking, diversion, NHS, trading, Ponzi scheme, cryptocurrencies and short and long term frauds;
  • Civil frauds including: director or corporate wrongdoing and governance, asset forfeiture and recovery;
  • Cyber crime and internet fraud;
  • Company investigations, cartel offences, insider dealing, market abuse, rate fixing and other FCA investigations and proceedings;
  • Bribery and corruption including cross-border matters;
  • Abuse of position and misconduct in a public office;
  • Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) investigations and proceedings;
  • Disqualification of directors, VAT & Duties Tribunals;
  • Tax investigations, evasion of taxes and cheating the Revenue including: VAT, Duty, PAYE and the suppression of income;
  • False documents, false accounting, false returns and deception;
  • Counterfeiting and forgery;
  • High value theft;
  • Money laundering and other Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) offences;
  • Cash seizures and Restraint (Freezing) Orders;
  • Confiscations;
  • Large scale drug trafficking and people trafficking offences and their related money laundering matters;
  • Business Regulatory Law including: breaches of Health and Safety, corporate manslaughter, Food Safety, Trading Standards, consumer protection, licensing breaches and Environmental Law;
  • Extradition, European Arrest Warrants (EAW) and Interpol Red Notices;
  • Judicial Review.

Riad’s clients are located throughout the UK and abroad and include foreign nationals currently under investigation or being prosecuted within England and Wales. His services are retained via private, insurance and legal aid (where available) funding avenues.

Trainee Solicitor

Dessy Nascimento

Dessy’s background is in fund management and law.

Her professional experience includes managing investments for a global multinational, providing regulatory advice on the UK financial services sector and being on the board of directors of a small London-based consultancy. Alongside that, she has also held the pro-bono position of managing editor at an Oxford-based, peer-reviewed literary journal.


Sarah Meechan

Sarah has recently joined us and her profile will be available soon.


Leona Brown

Leona is an experienced solicitor, with Higher Rights of Audience and has been a specialist criminal practitioner for over 15 years. She undertakes all aspects of criminal defence work defending clients against prosecutions by the CPS, HMRC, DWP, Local Authorities, and Serious Fraud Office.

She has extensive experience of criminal litigation and advocacy, having successfully defended clients charged with criminal offences ranging from general crime, such as Road Traffic Act offences, assaults, and thefts to more serious cases such as complex frauds, serious sexual offences, and murder.

Leona prides herself in offering her clients continuity of service and often represents and supports her clients from the point of initial advice at the police station, to the preparation and advocacy of their case in the Magistrates’ and Crown Court.

Leona has a formidable reputation for her dedication, attention to detail, and tenacity in defending cases and her direct but compassionate approach has secured her a sizeable and loyal client following in London, Manchester and Leeds.

Support & Administration


Brian Craig MSc, DIC, BSc

Brian has more than 25 years’ management experience in the legal field. Initially working for the agency that ran legal aid he was responsible for the organisation and development of the Duty Solicitor Scheme for London and South East England.  After 4 years in this role he became the business manager of a national law firm helping them expand to become the largest criminal defence firm in the UK. During this time Brian was seconded by the Law Society onto various bodies concerned with negotiating legal aid with the government.   More recently, he has acted as a consultant to several large London law firms.  He was the first non-solicitor member of the CLSA and LCCSA in recognition of his contributions to these representative bodies and was the architect and first chairman of the Association of Major Criminal Law Firms.  As one of the founders, Brian now brings his considerable management experience to the running and organisation of CLK.

Senior Clerk

David Foreman

Head of Property Management

Jovita Bendaraviciute

Jovita’s background is in property sales and management. She has a qualification in site Management. Jovita is a qualified Lithuanian Interpreter and  speaks fluent Russian.

Spanish and South American Consultant and Linguistics

Laura Gutierrez

Laura is an executive communications professional.  She speaks fluent English, Spanish and Italian and intermediate Japanese.

She has consulted as well translated for a wide range of businesses in Spain, Italy, Hong Kong and Indonesia.

International Legal Consultant

Maria Londono

Maria Londono is an International Lawyer who specialises in Private International Law.

Maria has extensive knowledge of the legal system in Spain including business corporate law, family, wills & probate. She can also resolve other international disputes such as property, international business and contracts between Latin America and Europe.

She is a Multi-jurisdictional Lawyer in Spain & England and Wales, speaks fluent English and Spanish and is a member of the Civil Litigation Section of the Law Society.

Maria is a member of The Law Society of England and Wales and is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and the ICAM (Madrid Spain Bar Association).