Leonard Smith QC

year of call :


year of silk :




cv & downloads

General Crime

Has appeared in over 40 murder trials and also in appellate jurisdictions  including the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council (3 Appeals) and in the House of Lords (R v H and C), and the High Court of Australia.

Advised in the News of the World phone hacking case

Recent significant General Crime cases:

Sexual Offences

Has a long history of defending contested sexual cases including alleged historical sexual abuse cases,  cases involving multiple complainants of all ages and recently, in sexual grooming cases in complex investigations attracting wide publicity.

In R v Ahmed and others  (Snarebrook Crown Court) defended alleged ring leader of sexual grooming gang in eight week trial.

Advised  in Operation Central, the investigation into alleged widespread organised sexual abuse in Rotherham.

Immigration offences

In 2016, appeared for alleged main defendant in three month trial concerning international immigration offending between mainland China and the UK.

Drugs Offences

R  v Safder and Others– Luton CC: A  case concerning one of the largest ever importations of high purity heroin into Europe  has concluded  at Luton Crown Court .  An international drug smuggling gang centred in Pakistan, crammed over 230 kilos of 80% pure heroin into an imported Jaguar which was seized by the NCA in December 2013.

After a four week trial, only defendant acquitted by the jury. Instructed by Stephen Lickrish and Associates  of  Manchester. 

Media reports –

Sky News - Pair Stuffed Car With Heroin Worth £37m

Daily Mail - Men who tried to smuggle heroin worth £40 million by stuffing it into bumpers, wheel arches, seats and engine of a Jaguar are jailed

ITV - Luton: Two men found guilty of trying to bring £37 million worth of heroin into the UK in battered Jaguar

The Telegraph - Heroin worth £37m 'smuggled into Britain in bumpers, dashboard and engine of battered Jaguar X-Type

BBC News - Heroin worth £37m revealed in imported car X-ray

R v Salami and others - Winchester Crown Court –Jan 2012 - Appeared for the main defendant in major class A drug supply trial.

Murder cases

A specialist with extensive experience.  In 2016, achieved the acquittal of (HD) in the first post Jogee  joint enterprise murder trial at the Central Criminal Court.

R v Townsend -  Central Criminal Court - Defendant charged with murder of cousin –acquitted after trial of murder.

R –v- Manai & 1 other – Central Criminal Court - Acting for a defendant charged with one other in a double murder. Police called to a flat where two mutilated bodies discovered having suffered brutal slaying using knives and steam iron, believed to be classic revenge killings by Southern Italian nationals. Case built upon compilation of forensic, telephonic, csi, cctv and post mortem analysis, and complicated by a cut-throat defence. Mr Smith QC led Mr Grahame James and was instructed by Mr Sachin Rajput of Desoysa & Fernando solicitors.