Our People

David Caplin
Director

David is the fraud lead for the firm, always carrying a caseload of some of the country’s most serious fraud cases, from early enquiry stage to the defence of prosecutions, he has been identified by clients and fellow professionals over the last 6 years as a leading criminal lawyer (Chambers & Partners guide to the legal profession) and described “as a masterful performer in heavyweight cases”. His varied experience means he is equipped to deal with all aspects of a criminal case from advice and representation at interview to advocacy before the higher courts. He prides himself on his ability to negotiate effectively always acting with the utmost discretion and sensitivity firmly believing for many clients their reputation is as important as their liberty.

Philip Lythgoe
Director

Phil’s career has moved smoothly from commercial practice to serious criminal defence work in which he has specialised since 1990 particularly in complex, paper heavy cases, both as a Partner at one of the country’s other leading fraud practices and then as a Partner at Cunninghams since 1998, and now partner at Cunninghams since their recent merger. Along the way, he has built up an enviable network of professional contacts including forensic accountants, I.T experts and leading barristers to always ensure all clients have a personally tailored defence team of the highest quality. His ability to identify the salient points in any case, no matter how complex, at the earliest stage is second to none. He was one of the first solicitors to obtain the Higher Courts qualification entitling him to practice in all Magistrates and Crown Courts in England and Wales. He sits on the Manchester Law Society Crown and Magistrates Court Committee.

Adrian Palmer
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Adrian qualified as a solicitor in 1994 and was previously a Partner in his own practice before joining Cunninghams in 2001 where he became a Partner and holds Higher Court Advocate status. Adrian’s court room advocacy experience has seen him representing defendants in extremely high value, complex multi-handed cases including successful applications to dismiss the Prosecution’s case before the defence case has begun. Where the evidence against a client is overwhelming his skilful judgement and advocacy can result in a non custodial outcome where others would say a prison sentence was inevitable. He understands the pressures of fraud allegations against professionals in particular.

Noel Griffiths
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Noel is a senior solicitor with vast experience working in all aspects of criminal law since qualifying in 1996. In 2004 became a specialist in the field of serious complex criminal cases, including those regulated by the Complex Case Unit (CCU – a division of the Legal Services Commission). He has extensive experience representing clients charged with large scale fraud matters, including mortgage, carousel and MTIC frauds, as well as serious crime including gangland murders, multi-handed conspiracies to supply and import drugs and firearms cases. He has travelled internationally as part of his investigations into the drug trade whilst defending clients charged with drug related importation offences. He is also a specialist police station representative with extensive experience in all types of offences involving uniformed officers, CID and the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) and has been responsible for the training of many police station representatives throughout his career. Noel is currently representing clients involved in a £100 million MTIC fraud as well as a £3.5 billion conspiracy to supply controlled substances.

Ffion Jones
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Ffion Qualified as a Solicitor in February 2006 and has continued to practice in all aspects of criminal law. Her varied experience means she is capable of representing clients from the initial police station attendance through to the conclusion of the case. Ffion specialises in serious criminal defence work including complex multi handed cases involving high value fraud. She prides herself in being a highly skilled advocate and has achieved outstanding results for clients as a result. Ffion is also experienced in representing clients facing regulatory prosecutions.

Sarah Bull
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Sarah is Cunninghams’s proceeds of crime and serious crime specialist and has been highly experienced in many aspects of criminal law since 1995, dealing with all manner of clients from police station representation through to Crown Court. Sarah has gained an outstanding reputation for skilfully dealing with more serious and complex crimes including high value frauds, MTIC frauds, multi handed drug conspiracies and gangland murders. Sarah’s tenacious analytical skills in strenuously contesting vast amounts of the Crown’s evidence have reduced a client’s benefit figure from £600,000 to £130,000 in a recent eBay Fraud. In a separate matter Sarah’s investigation carried out a full tracing of her client’s income and net assets to enable her to demonstrate that many of the financial allegations, including other income tax irregularities, which had been made by the Crown, were in fact unfounded. Sarah is particularly skilled in fighting client’s cases and challenging the Crown’s evidence. This is vital where hidden assets are concerned, as a lengthy default sentence needs a robust defence

Steve Halsall
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Steve has been a Crown Court caseworker since 1999 drawing on his experience within the Police force of handling high-profile, complex and protracted cases – including the Yorkshire Ripper inquiry. He is currently the lead case manager preparing the defence of a client being prosecuted under “Operation Chancellor” a corruption case involving the activities of Council officials embroiled in corrupt waste management contracts.

James McDermott
Fraud & Business Crime Team

James joined Cunninghams in 2009 bringing with him invaluable experience from commercial legal practice and the Health & Safety Executive.   Since qualifying as a solicitor, he has maintained a substantial caseload of serious Crown Court matters.  James is also a reliable and effective advocate in the Magistrates Court.

Jennifer Crossley
Fraud & Business Crime Team

Jenny joined the firm in 2008 bringing with her 13 years of customer service experience, she has gained an outstanding reputation for her compassionate and discrete manner when dealing with all clients, from the initial enquiry onwards. Always ensuring the appropriate solicitor is instructed to prepare your case. She assists the department in the preparation of cases; liaising with specialists and the courts, and maintains overall client care and satisfaction.

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