Firm Name: Furnival Chambers
Jurisdiction: United Kingdom
Practice Area: Criminal Law
London EC4A 1JQ
Oliver has been repeatedly listed for more than 10 years in the top category of leading silks in crime in both Chambers & Partners and in Legal 500. He was nominated in the Chambers Bar Awards 2010 as Crime Silk of the Year, and was recently named Serious Crime Barrister of the Year in England in the 2017 Corporate INTL Global Awards.
In the last two years Oliver has successfully represented News International’s Graham Dudman (Managing Editor) and Brandon Malinksky (Night Editor) in two separate Operation Elveden Trials working with the Sun Newspaper. Also instructed on behalf of three other editor/ journalists whose cases were discontinued by the prosecution prior to trial.
He has twice been instructed by the British Boxing Board of Control in successfully resisting two appeals (Couch and Chisora).
According to successive Chambers and Partners Directories he has been described as “a first class silk for heavyweight criminal trials, such as murder and drugs cases”. “Always very good, so experienced and laid back”. (2015).
“First-rate”. His judgement is excellent and he has a very disarming court room manner”. (2014)
“Universally acclaimed” Oliver Blunt QC is described as “one of the Longstanding Leaders of the Bar”(2013) “a master tactician with an absolute command of the courts” with “a sense of panache and drama”. (2012) “supremely bright with a very good way with the jury and enviable cross examination skills” (2011) and “one of the hardest hitting silks at the Bar. He is a real street fighter and gives great jury speeches” (2010), “tremendously effective and a real heavyweight in the courtroom” (2009), “frighteningly clever, a magnetic presence in court” (2008), “at ease with any case of whatever complexity or seriousness” (2007), “a leading figure, famed for never missing a trick when it comes to the crunch” (2006), ” a wise and silky smooth advocate, he continues to harvest some of the best work at the criminal bar. Blessed with both suavity and a talent for getting on with all levels of society” (2005).
Oliver’s track record more than justifies the plaudits. Focused on murder, terrorism, fraud and drugs cases, his experience in violent crime in unsurpassed. Examples range from the trials of Michael Sams (kidnapping, blackmail and murder) and John Taft (the “Beauty in the bath” murder) to such high profile cases as the Syd Owen (“Ricky” from Eastenders) wounding trial and R v William Cockram and others, the Millennium Dome robbery. Oliver was also instructed in the high profile cases of R v Peter Tobin (murder dating back to 1991 linked to the Vicky Hamilton murder tried in 2006 in Scotland) and R v Iain Davis (double murder re-trial following House of Lords ruling on anonymous witnesses). He is regularly instructed in gang related murders at the Central Criminal Court.
Terrorism trials have formed a significant part of Oliver’s practice recently, with his involvement in R v Sharif, arising out of the 21/7 bombings. However, his terrorism experience goes back over several decades and includes IRA trials and appearances on behalf of the Iranian embassy and its consular staff. He is currently instructed in Ul-Haq and Others, an ISIS related trial due at the Central Criminal Court (2016).
Oliver’s experience in fraud and white collar crime includes a number of large and complex cases. These range from a £200 million shipping fraud, a multi-million pound arson/insurance fraud, and money laundering cases, to an electoral fraud trial. Oliver also represented Devi Schahou in the much-publicised Goldman Sachs fraud trial. In 2009 Oliver secured the acquittal of the defendant Colwell in relation to the highly publicised Sayers conspiracies to commit large scale mortgage fraud in the North-East.
Oliver’s track record in the area of drugs crime is also extensive and impressive, and includes successfully defending the first defendant in an £150 million pound cocaine importation case. He represented the defendant Goren in a multi-million pound conspiracy to import heroin from Turkey. He has appeared for the defendant Cornick in a case involving the importation of tonnes of cocaine, cannabis and amphetamine into the UK. In 2014 he secured the acquittal of the principal defendant in Mohanjit Bhatia and Others at Kingston Crown Court.
His exclusively defence-based practice also includes high profile sexual offences for example, Richard Baker “the DJ rapist” and blackmail, for example the case of Amerdeep Johal, a serving police officer accused of blackmailing known sex offenders.
Oliver regularly appears in the list of highest earning criminal barristers.
Furnival Chambers was established in 1985 to deliver a comprehensive and specialist criminal law service for solicitors and lay clients. We are committed to ensuring that everything good in the traditional and independent bar thrives in a modern environment.