Matthew Howarth

Call To The Bar: England & Wales Call to the Bar: 2016 Northern Ireland Call to the Bar: 2020

Matthew started practice in 2014 with the Banking and Finance litigation team for one of the World’s largest law firms, Baker & McKenzie. During his early practice Matthew defended a large FTSE 100 Company as part of the LIBOR Scandal. He has extensive experience in Fraud and Financial Crime as a result, with a vast experience in dealing with complex issues arising from Legal Professional Privilege.

Joining Chambers in 2016, Matthew has sought to develop a practice that encompasses Public Law, Regulatory and Criminal matters. As a result, he has gained numerous prestigious appointments that make him stand out amongst his peers at the Bar. He has a strong practice on behalf of HMRC, the Government Legal Department and the Serious Fraud Office. Recently he was instructed as a junior counsel in the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse, and assisted in a Judicial Review for the Victim’s Rights Group ‘Hacked Off’ following the Phone Hacking Scandal.

He has vast experience of dealing with complex Judicial Reviews applications and POCA matters, Regulatory offences and mainly Fraud (including VAT and MTIC). He sits on the Attorney General’s specialist Panel of Counsel, the Serious Fraud Office Panel, Regulatory Panel and is a specialist CPS POCA Prosecutor. He has extensive experience defending in these areas also. He is currently defending a multi-handed transfer of firearms and Class A PWITS matter in Nottingham.

In 2020 Matthew was called to the Bar of Northern Ireland.

Financial Crime, Fraud & POCA

• Matthew has extensive experience in POCA and Fraud matters. In 2021, Matthew was one of five barristers out of London to be appointed to the Serious Fraud Office Panel C of Prosecution. He is currently instructed in an on-going large scale investigation into Fraud on behalf of the SFO.
• Coupled with his experience from the Financial Litigation Team at Baker & McKenzie, he is routinely instructed to handle large scale complex financial litigation dealing with disclosure, legal professional privilege and advising on litigation.
• Matthew was one of two Manchester barristers appointed to the Attorney General’s Panel C in 2020. He often deals with cases brought by HMRC from Forfeiture and confiscation hearings, through to Commercial Account Freezing Orders and POCA proceedings in the Crown Court to the Court of Appeal. He was appointed to the specialist CPS Panel Level 2 for POCA in 2021.
• Matthew also has experience with Tax Fraud. Recently he was instructed by HMRC to prosecute a multi-million pound MTIC Fraud case before the Tax Tribunals. (Kittle and Mecsek). He has also dealt with numerous VAT and Tax applications before the High Court on appeal.
• Matthew also has extensive experience in dealing with general criminal litigation and is recognised in this area of law by his appointment to the CPS General Crime Panel Level 3 and POCA Panel Level 2 in 2021, and Serious Crime Panel Level 2 in 2020. He is currently being led on a large scale drugs and gun conspiracy at Nottingham Crown Court.

Public Law (Immigration and Judicial Review) and Civil Law

• As a specialist barrister for the Attorney General, Matthew is routinely instructed in claims for False Imprisonment relating to periods of Unlawful Detention by the Secretary of State. He is instructed in this area of law regularly keeping up to date through publications and case law updates. He has recently dealt with a number of Judicial Review applications and interim relief hearings, and is often sought to advise on Quantum in the County Court and QBD. He has dealt with EEA cases under Dublin III and Non-EEA Hardial Singh claims and is often instructed to offer advice for Government Departments and grounds of appeal in this work. Recently he had conduct of a number false imprisonment claims made during COVID-19 under Article 3 & 5 ECHR and in relation to failure to provide s.95 and s.4 Accommodation.
• In addition to providing expert advice in unlawful detention/false imprisonment claims, both for judicial review and civil claims, Matthew has extensive experience in substantive claims for failure to provide asylum support.
• Matthew has recently been instructed to conduct inquest hearings on behalf of the Secretary of State. He has experience developed as a junior in the IICSA inquiry and through the Phone Hacking Scandal on behalf of ‘Hacked Off’.
• Matthew has also conducted a wide range of multi-track and fast-track personal injury and public liability claims. He is routinely instructed in county court claims and to draft papers on behalf of Government and Claimants. He has also a great deal of experience with landlord and tenant disputes.
• Matthew is also experienced in Immigration litigation from the First and Upper Tier Tribunals through to Fresh Submission Judicial Review claims. He has been instructed recently to propose a number of interim relief applications before the High Court. Further to this he has had conduct of a Habeas Corpus claim in the High Court and recently before the Court of Appeal. It is currently pending application before the Supreme Court.

Disciplinary/Safeguarding/Professional Negligence

• Coupled with this experience he has conduct of a number of Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) appeals under the Safeguarding Vulnerable Group Act 2006 in the Upper Tier Tribunals and is on hand to offer representation within this area on a Direct Access Basis. He is willing to draft submissions and make representations on short notice. Matthew Has represented both the DBS and Appellants from initial advice on paper, drafting submissions for court, conference and on appeal to the Upper Tier Tribunals.
• Matthew is often instructed on a wide range of professional negligence matters against and for doctors, dentists and solicitors. He is routinely instructed to draft advices, assist with letters before action and represent professional clients at court

Regulatory Law & Road Traffic Offences

• In 2019 Matthew was appointed to the Specialist Regulatory Panel C of Prosecution Advocates. This recognised his experience in the fields of Environmental Law and Health & Safety Law.
• Matthew has extensive experience in representing haulage companies in relation to Road Traffic matters both in the Crown Court and before Traffic Commissioners Office in the Upper Tribunals. He has conducted a number of disputes in relation to tachographs and operators licenses through to fly-tipping offences. He is able to offer advice in this area.
• Recently he has advised Government on a range of Civil Penalty Appeals for Clandestine Entrants and Operator Licensing disputes.
• Matthew is routinely instructed to defend Environment Offences, from fly tipping through to advising large companies in relation to waste and water disputes.
• Matthew has also represented a number of companies. In the Crown Court he has conducted cases in relation to gross-negligence manslaughter through to Health and Safety at work offences in construction disputes.
• Recently he has appeared as advocate prosecuting and defending a number of licensing and Trademark/counterfeit goods offences. He has successfully represented a number of companies in relation to Fraud allegations as to HGV licences and individuals in Taxi license appeals.
• Matthew has gained substantial experience in Road Traffic Offences. He recently was instructed on a Death by Dangerous Driving at Leeds Crown Court through and is often sought to argue exceptional hardship/special reasons mitigation in the Magistrates Court.
• Through appointment on the Attorney General’s Panel Matthew has experience in a number of cases relating to Driving License Disqualification and appeals of DVLA decisions in relation to licensing following bans for drink driving or medical reasons.

Summary of Appointments

2021 – Serious Fraud Office – Panel C appointment

Crown Prosecution Service – Level 3 General Crime Panel Appointment and Level 2 POCA Panel Appointment

2020 – Attorney General Specialist Panel of Civil Counsel – C Panel

Level 2 Serious Crime Prosecution Panel CPS

Call to the Bar of Northern Ireland Michaelmas Term 2020

2019 – Specialist Regulatory Panel C Prosecution Advocate (Environment Agency and Health & Safety Executive)

2017 – Public Access Qualified.

‘Matthew was Junior for the Northern Circuit in 2019 and currently sits on the Northern Circuit Executive Committee as Representation on the Bar Council https://www.northerncircuit.org.uk/about-us/circuit-officers/’