Called to the Bar:1976

Silk:2001

  • A Silk who just "stands out"; a formidable advocate with superior intellect and a complete commitment to the client. 

    Corporate & Financial Crime

    William Boyce QC is sought out to defend corporates and individuals in the complex and the high profile. His expertise and experience includes: frauds in banking, mortgages, market making and mergers and acquisitions; false announcements to the market; insider dealing; FX manipulation; arms to lraq sanctions breaches; international bribery and corruption and cartel offences.

    William has a broad advisory practice, providing advice, guidance and direction to companies and to individuals.

    Crime 

    A Silk known for his meticulous preparation and extraordinarily persuasive advocacy, he is repeatedly instructed to act in cases involving the most serious of crimes, through all stages of the process and all tiers of the legal system; he provides guidance and direction pre-charge to promptly halt criminal proceedings and appears for clients in all courts from the magistrates through to the Supreme Court. 

    As a Recorder himself, he is extraordinarily well versed in the law and its application in the Crown Court. He is one of a few who is highly regarded by the judiciary.

    Private Prosecution 

    He is regularly instructed to advise upon, prosecute and defend in complex and high profile private prosecutions invariably, although not exclusively, involving financial crime.

    As a private prosecutor, he is praised for his fair and thorough approach and as a defender, he is known for his exemplary tactical application of private prosecution knowledge, gleaned from leading the largest value private prosecution ever brought in the UK.

    Reviews 

    Chambers UK 2019: Financial Crime - Band 1; Crime - Band 1

    Legal 500 2018: Business and Regulatory Crime (Including Global investigations) - Tier 2; Crime - Tier 2; Fraud Crime - Tier 3

    'He is devastatingly kind, and an understated barrister who behaves in such a way that everyone has confidence in him. He's a master strategist who is very wise.' 'Utterly lovely and very thoughtful towards the client.' Chambers UK Crime (2019)

    'A devastating cross-examiner and a meticulous preparer of a cases.' 'He's a master of detail and he works exceptionally hard.' Chambers UK Financial Crime (2019)

    'A superb case strategist, with a second-to-none bedside manner.' Legal 500 Business and Regulatory Crime (2018)

    'His advocacy brings words to life, creating empathy in juries.' Legal 500 Crime (2018)

    'A genuine team player who is a pleasure to work with.' Legal 500 Fraud: Crime (2018)

    'Very tenacious and user-friendly.' 'He is a delightful old-school advocate who really engages with the jury.' Chambers UK Crime (2018)

    'Wise and formidably clever,' 'he is delightful and impressive in equal measure.' 'A pleasure to work with, he's very good at explaining complex legal concepts in a straightforward manner.' Chambers UK Financial Crime (2018)

    'His skill and commitment to cases gets results.' Legal 500 Business and Regulatory Crime (2017)

    'He often stands out as the best advocate in the room – the one the jury listens to.' Legal 500 Crime (2017)

    'Among the leading criminal silks in London; he is intellectually very strong and clients trust him implicitly.' Legal 500 Fraud: Crime (2017)

    'His attention to detail and case preparation are meticulous.' Chambers UK Crime (2016)

    'You will not find anybody more eloquent, and he has the most charming way of addressing the court. He is a superb lawyer.' Chambers UK Crime (2015)

    Appointments

    • 1997-2001 Senior Treasury Counsel, Central Criminal Court
    • 1991-1997 Junior Treasury Counsel, Central Criminal Court
    • 1993 - Recorder
    • Bencher of Gray’s Inn

    Professional Memberships

    • Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers
    • Bar Council
    • Competition Law Association
    • Criminal Bar Association
    • European Criminal Bar Association
    • Extradition Lawyers' Association
    • Female Fraud Forum
    • Fraud Advisory Panel
    • Health & Safety Lawyers Association
    • International Bar Association
    • Justice

    Education

    • BA (Kent) 
      Who's who legal

    Privacy Notice

    Recent Cases

    • William Boyce QC and Karen Robinson are instructed to defend one of the Senior Executives of Barclays as a result of the banks capital raising in 2008 and a US$3 Billion loan to Qatar.

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    • Historic allegation of child rape and other sexual abuse.

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    • Allegation of murder/assisted suicide by pharmacist in respect of his father.

       

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    • William Boyce QC led Philip McGhee in the prosecution of the former TV producer who hired several hitmen to murder his female partner.

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    • In 2014, Ketan Somaia was convicted by a jury of nine counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception, contrary to section 15A of the Theft Act 1968.

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    • William Boyce QC was instructed by Corker Binning to represent accountant Andrew Hind in the largest case ever brought for share trading abuses in the UK.

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    • Russian teenager – student at College – accused of abducting and falsely imprisoning a fellow female student and sexually assaulting her.

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    • Successful prosecution for possession of explosive substances and ammunition after an extensive counter-terrorism investigation. Rashad had already been convicted of the murder of an imam.

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    • William Boyce QC was instructed on behalf of a Director of British Airways plc, while Adrian Darbishire represented the company's former Head of Communications.

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    News

    Articles

  • Corporate and Financial Crime

    A master of the complex, he is frequently instructed in the most intricate, prominent and high value financial crime cases.

    Overview 

    William Boyce QC is sought out to defend corporates and individuals in the complex and the high profile. His expertise and experience includes: frauds in banking, mortgages, market making and mergers and acquisitions; false announcements to the market; insider dealing; FX manipulation; arms to lraq sanctions breaches; international bribery and corruption and cartel offences.

    William has a broad advisory practice, providing advice, guidance and direction to companies and to individuals.

    Experience 

    William Boyce QC has acted in many and various frauds – banking, mortgage, market making, insider dealing, false announcements to the market including the first prosecution of its kind for the then FSA (R v Rigby & Others), LIBOR, arms to Iraq, international bribery and corruption, cartel, and relating to M&A.

    William’s vast experience includes: representing a defendant in the largest insider dealing case to date brought by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA); advising a technology company regarding discussions with the MoJ concerning the admissibility of data from new technology; advising the Gambling Commission in relation to criminal prosecutions arising out of a misuse of relevant licences; action in appellate proceedings regarding confiscation procedures and the impact of the ECHR; prosecuting in the highest value private prosecution in the Crown Court to date (regarding alleged fraud, in the context of international business dealings between high net worth individuals); advising London and US lawyers regarding a global corporation on suspected bribery and corruption in the lead-up period to an international M&A; advising prosecuting entities in relation to a case involving allegations of international corruption in the context of cartel infringements; advising a client facing two sets of criminal proceedings and linked civil proceedings in the UK arising out of alleged corrupt practices in a West African state, and using banks in a central European state to process the alleged proceeds; and advising a client facing confiscation proceedings under Jersey law, following his conviction (when differently represented in Jersey) in relation to corrupt practices in West Africa and the Balkans.

    Most recently, William has been instructed to act for a high-profile trader and rate-setter in relation to alleged LIBOR manipulation; is instructed to advise a senior executive in relation to the bribery and corruption investigation into Rolls Royce; is instructed to advise and represent a senior party regarding an investigation into whether dealings between a global corporation and a sovereign wealth fund involved bribery and corruption at the highest level; and is currently instructed in three very high value arbitrations involving the oil and gas industry.

    His vast knowledge and intellect means he is often engaged to take matters to the highest tiers of the legal system; he is regularly instructed in the Court of Appeal in relation to cases in which he was not instructed in the courts below. He has been at the forefront of changes to our law in the field of corporate and financial crime; in R v Harvey, in the UK Supreme Court, he argued that VAT should be taken into account when making orders under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

    William is the head of QEB Hollis Whiteman's Corporate & Financial Crime team.

    Notable Cases

    Operation Tabernula (Andrew Hind) (2016)
    Two convicted and three acquitted in the biggest insider trading trial to date; William Boyce QC instructed on behalf of accountant Andrew Hind who was sentenced to just three years and six months. 

    R v PD & EB (2012)
    After four-and-a-half years, proceedings in the prosecution of PD and EB for Iraqi sanctions busting finally ended on 24th February 2012 when the prosecution offered no evidence as a result of serious failing in the disclosure process. 

    British Airways/Virgin Price-Fixing Trial (2010)
    Instructed by British Airways plc in the first trial of of a charge under the cartel offence (section 188, Enterprise Act). The prosecution offered no evidence and all defendants were acquitted.

    Operation Eaglewood (2010)
    This was the largest-ever criminal case in London prosecuted by the CPS and the Metropolitan Police Service. This case, involving the laundering of €100m in cash and the seizure of more than £5m worth of cocaine, resulted in the convictions of 32 defendants, who together received a total sentence in excess of 200 years.

    R v Ikilat & Others (2008)
    Instructed, with five juniors, by CPS HQ Special Casework to prosecute a huge (more than 40 defendants) series of interlinked allegations of money laundering (£100m through one office alone in less than six months) and drug-trafficking.

    Reviews

    Chambers UK 2019: Financial Crime - Band 1

    Legal 500 2018: Business and Regulatory Crime (Including Global investigations) - Tier 2; Fraud Crime - Tier 3

    'A devastating cross-examiner and a meticulous preparer of a cases.' 'He's a master of detail and he works exceptionally hard.' Chambers UK Financial Crime (2019)

    'A superb case strategist, with a second-to-none bedside manner.' Legal 500 Business and Regulatory Crime (2018)

    'His advocacy brings words to life, creating empathy in juries.' Legal 500 Crime (2018)

    'A genuine team player who is a pleasure to work with.' Legal 500 Fraud: Crime (2018)

    'Wise and formidably clever,' 'he is delightful and impressive in equal measure.' 'A pleasure to work with, he's very good at explaining complex legal concepts in a straightforward manner.' Chambers UK Financial Crime (2018)

    'His skill and commitment to cases gets results.' Legal 500 Business and Regulatory Crime (2017)

    'Among the leading criminal silks in London; he is intellectually very strong and clients trust him implicitly.' Legal 500 Fraud: Crime (2017)

    Recent Cases

    News

  • Recognised as one of the leading cross examiners at the Bar; his advocacy skills are unrivalled. He has the respect of the Judges and the focus of the jurors.

    Overview

    A Silk known for his meticulous preparation and extraordinarily persuasive advocacy, he is repeatedly instructed to act in cases involving the most serious of crimes through all stages of the process and all tiers of the legal system; he provides guidance and direction pre-charge to promptly halt criminal proceedings and appears for clients in all courts from the magistrates through to the Supreme Court. 

    As a Recorder himself, he is extraordinarily well versed in the law and its application in the Crown Court. He is one of a few who is highly regarded by the judiciary.

    Experience 

    As former Senior Treasury Counsel, William began his career prosecuting the most grave and high-profile crimes. Soon recognised by the defence as a formidable opponent, his practice was combined with defence work.

    He has acted in various terrorism trials, including those involving the IRA, as well as War Crime Investigations.

    William has acted in a vast number of murder cases ranging from defending a youth gang member against charges of joint enterprise to representing a serial killer, Levi Bellfield, for the murder of Milly Dowler.

    He has recently been instructed to defend a number of allegations of serious sexual and often historical assault on a privately funded basis. He is often engaged pre-charge to halt criminal proceedings at the earliest opportunity wherever possible.

    William is frequently instructed on appeal where he has not conducted the original criminal trial. His superior intellect, and highly regarded advocacy skills set him apart as someone who gets results.

    Notable Cases

    R v Martin (2013)
    William Boyce QC defended Sam Martin at Chelmsford Crown Court on a charge of murder at a V Festival after-party.

    R v Rose (2013)
    Prosecution of Derek Rose at Southwark Crown Court for the blackmail of Tamara Ecclestone.

    R v Akra & Others (2011)
    William Boyce QC defended one of the teenagers in the Victoria Station murder. 

    R v BellField (2008)
    William Boyce QC defended the notorious English serial killer. 

    Reviews

    Chambers UK 2019: Crime - Band 1

    Legal 500 2018: Crime - Tier 2

    'He is devastatingly kind, and an understated barrister who behaves in such a way that everyone has confidence in him. He's a master strategist who is very wise.' 'Utterly lovely and very thoughtful towards the client.' Chambers UK Crime (2019)

    'His advocacy brings words to life, creating empathy in juries.' Legal 500 Crime (2018)

    'Very tenacious and user-friendly.' 'He is a delightful old-school advocate who really engages with the jury.' Chambers UK Crime (2018)

    'He often stands out as the best advocate in the room – the one the jury listens to.' Legal 500 Crime (2017)

    'His attention to detail and case preparation are meticulous.' Chambers UK Crime (2016)

    'You will not find anybody more eloquent, and he has the most charming way of addressing the court. He is a superb lawyer.' Chambers UK Crime (2015)

    'A big name at the criminal defence Bar.' Legal 500 (2015)

    Recent Cases

    • Historic allegation of child rape and other sexual abuse.

    • Allegation of murder/assisted suicide by pharmacist in respect of his father.

       

    • William Boyce QC led Philip McGhee in the prosecution of the former TV producer who hired several hitmen to murder his female partner.

    • Russian teenager – student at College – accused of abducting and falsely imprisoning a fellow female student and sexually assaulting her.

    • Successful prosecution for possession of explosive substances and ammunition after an extensive counter-terrorism investigation. Rashad had already been convicted of the murder of an imam.

    News

  • Private Prosecutions

    The original and most experienced Silk in the field; whether you are bringing or defending a private prosecution, you will want him in your corner.

    Overview

    He is regularly instructed to advise upon, prosecute and defend in complex and high-profile private prosecutions invariably, although not exclusively, involving financial crime.

    As a private prosecutor, he is praised for his fair and thorough approach and as a defender, he is known for his exemplary tactical application of private prosecution knowledge, gleaned from leading the largest value private prosecution ever brought in the UK.

    Experience 

    From 2009 to 2017, he led the prosecution in what is believed to be the largest-value prosecution (in excess of US$19m) ever brought in the UK by an individual (R v Somaia).

    He has advised a number of international companies and individuals regarding commencing Private Prosecutions against backgrounds of: a commercial shipping dispute in China; blackmail in the Far East; and a custody dispute in the Middle East.

    He has drawn from his experience as Senior Treasury Counsel and one of the most highly regarded public prosecutors and developed a niche understanding of this delicate field.

    Notable Cases

    R v Somaia (Ketan) (2009-2017)
    Successful private prosecution: Ketan Somaia convicted by a jury of nine counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception.

    Reviews

    'A devastating cross-examiner and a meticulous preparer of a cases.' 'He's a master of detail and he works exceptionally hard.' Chambers UK (2019)

    'Very tenacious and user-friendly.' Chambers UK (2018)

    'A highly effective silk with an impressively persuasive manner in front of judges and juries.' – Chambers UK (2017)

    'Among the leading criminal silks in London; he is intellectually very strong and clients trust him implicitly.' Legal 500 (2016)

    'His meticulous preparation, attention to detail and lethal intellect make him a very fine advocate.' Chambers UK (2015)

    Recent Cases

    • In 2014, Ketan Somaia was convicted by a jury of nine counts of obtaining a money transfer by deception, contrary to section 15A of the Theft Act 1968.

    News

    Articles