Sarah Magill

Call To The Bar: 2016

Sarah is a highly competent and versatile advocate, with a great deal of experience in serious offences within the criminal and regulatory spectrum. She is regularly instructed to both defend and prosecute in substantial cases involving complicated expert evidence and multi-handed prosecutions.

Sarah was Called to the Bar in 2016 as a transferring duty qualified Solicitor-Advocate, and has since become a member of the Association of Military Court Advocates, accepting instructions from both Courts Martial and members of the military facing prosecution in civilian courts. She is a level 3 CPS Prosecutor and is also on the CPS Fraud Panel and Serious Organised Crime Panels. In addition to the CPS Panels Sarah is also on the Specialist Regulatory Advocate Panel which enables her to prosecute on behalf of various regulators including the Health and Safety Executive and Environment Agency.

Experience Prior to the Bar:

Prior to qualification as a practitioner, Sarah worked within the field of forensic mental health, aiding those with serious mental illness caught up in the justice system, providing tier-1 support to individuals both in prisons and the wider community, a unique experience from which Sarah regularly draws upon in practice.

During her time reading Law at Cardiff University, Sarah led an Innocence Project team who were responsible for the casework that ultimately led to a murder conviction being successfully overturned at the Court of Appeal, a first for such a team in British legal history.

Cases of Interest


R v W et al – Preston Crown Court  Series of armed robberies with imitation firearms, hammers and knives.

R v E and F – Barrow Crown Court  Prosecuted two men for s.18 GBH

R v P and W – Preston Crown Court  Defended one of two men prosecuted at trial for an armed robbery where a finger was severed

Operation Tahiti – Liverpool Crown Court Defended one of ten men prosecuted for football violence

R v T – Redditch Magistrates’ Court  Assault PC x 2, Obstruct, s.5 POA
Minor celebrity. Secured acquittal for all charges in a privately paid case that attracted a high level of media interest (national press and police professional standards in attendance).

R v A – Liverpool Crown Court  Prison Mutiny Defended one of eight teenagers prosecuted for a “wanton orgy” of violent destruction in a YOI

R v C – Preston Crown Court s.18 GBH – defended child accused of the near-fatal stabbing of a teenager. Reporting restrictions were lifted.

Fraud/Money Laundering

Operation Jennet – Preston Crown Court  Defended a RNLI volunteer, one of 10 defendants in a conspiracy to supply class A and money laundering

R v S – Burnley Crown Court  Defended carer prosecuted for long-running £96k fraud against elderly man who passed away pre-charge. Ran abuse argument on basis indictment was bad (successful).

R v P – Preston Crown Court  Defended carer prosecuted for long-running fraud against elderly relative who lost capacity pre-trial. Opposed hearsay and made s.78 app to exclude ABE; successful.

Operation Atrium Carlisle Crown Court  Defended one of 38 in a conspiracy to defraud motor insurers ‘crash for cash’


Operation Lawson – Preston Crown Court Prosecution junior, ten defendants, conspiracy to supply class A in Blackpool

R v L and S – Stafford Crown Court  Conveying heroin and cocaine into prison

Operation Halogen – Carlisle Crown Court  Defended one of seven charged with conspiracy to supply cocaine

R v Hamilton EWCA Crim 78  Conveying articles into prison (cocaine) – this case is the authority for how to sentence conveyance of drugs into prison. Successfully reduced sentence by half.

Courts Martial

R v Y – Catterick Military Court Centre  Defended civilian subject to service discipline

R v C – Catterick  Defended two counts of attempted s.18 GBH with a knife


R v Sendera – Stoke-on-Trent Crown Court  Conspiracy to commit burglary – value £3.5m
Defended one Romanian defendant prosecuted alone for his role in a professional multi-handed UK-wide travelling jewellery store raiding gang


R v R – Preston Crown Court Rape; 18 year old defendant prosecuted for offences when 15 and 16 against 12 year old who then turned 13. CPS had waited to prosecute until he reached 18th birthday.

R v W – Preston Crown Court  Successfully defended trial, four count indictment; historic sexual offences against a child


R v WD – Carlisle Crown Court  Firearms, private case – landowner with multiple weapons; sentence appeal allowed. Precious gun returned.