Tel: 0161 832 4036
Fax: 0161 832 0370
DX: 718200 Manchester 3

Practice Manager
Maria Rushworth
Arlington House
Bloom Street
M3 6AJ

Benjamin Nolan QC

  • Year of call: 1971



Top Ranked by Legal 500 2014
Benjamin Nolan QC is a leading barrister who prosecutes and defends complex high-profile cases.

Top Ranked by Legal 500 2013
Ben Nolan is reported in the Legal 500 for "defending Paul Mosley, the co-accused in the Allerton house fire trial".

Top Ranked by Legal 500 2011
A well known circuit heavyweight in serious crime.


  • Recorder
  • Deputy High Court Judge (Queen's Bench Division)
  • Middle Temple - Bencher, 2004

Areas of Specialism:

  • Murder & Manslaughter
  • Violent Crime
  • Sexual Offences
  • Rape
  • Sexual Abuse
  • Child Abuse
  • Fraud
  • Drug-Related Crime
  • Conspiracies
  • Public Order
  • Criminal Injury
  • Fatal Accidents
  • Industrial Disease
  • Injuries at Work
  • Road Traffic
  • Health & Safety

Described in Legal 500 as "a well known circuit heavyweight in serious crime", Ben has a wealth of experience in top level crime.  During his 20 years in Silk he has led in over 100 murder cases, many of them gangland killings involving ballistics evidence both in the UK and in other Commonwealth jurisdictions.

Of particular interest are cases with an international co-operation element such as extradition and the use of evidence obtained abroad pursuant to Letters of Request and The Crime (International Co-operation) Act 2003 and its statutory predecessors.  Ben has considerable experience in drugs smuggling cases involving massive importations into the UK and the alleged inducing of drug trafficking offences overseas.  He is considered to be a skilled cross-examiner of expert witnesses, particularly medical experts, and his skills have been deployed in alleged child killing cases (the so-called "shaken baby syndrome") and in trials involving psychiatric issues.  Ben has been invited to review the medico-legal element of reference works on forensic psychiatry.

In his fraud practice Ben has developed a particular interest in food safety frauds and is instructed to advise on the regulatory aspects of food safety and the enforcement of food safety standards.  In this respect, in particular, his practice crosses over from Crime to Regulatory and Civil Litigation, particularly in product liability cases.  He also undertakes Personal Injury claims involving catastrophic injuries and complex medical issues.

As well as practicing in Manchester, Ben has chambers in Newcastle, York and London.

Reported Cases

  • Sheffield R v Abel (Manslaughter by gross negligence) (2014)
  • R v M (Nottingham) : Alleged Manslaughter of six children in Arson attack on home (February 2013)
  • R v S (Manchester) : Murder.  Alleged Matricide (January 2013)
  • R v R (Manchester) : Murder.  'Shaken Baby Syndrome' (January 2013)
  • R v T (Manchester) : Murder reduced to Manslaughter (December 2012)
  • R v K.A. (Manchester) : Alleged Murder as part of gang attack on nightclub.  Successful submission of 'no case to answer' overturned by Court of Appeal on Terminating Ruling Appeal under S.58 C.J.A. 2003.  Defendant acquitted of Murder by jury when trial resumed.  (October 2012 - February 2013)
  • R v Michael Parr (Newcastle) : Defendant already serving life sentence.  Murder of fellow prison inmate alleged to be a 'nonce'.  Aspects of cannibalism alleged as motive and modus.  (July 2012)
  • R v Tomlinson (Manchester) : Defence.  Client acquitted of Child Destruction after trial.  (December 2012)
  • R v Maxwell (Leeds) :Prosecution.  Re-trial of Murder 14 years after event following successful appeal to Court of Appeal on reference by CCRC and further Appeal to Supreme Court.  Appellant convicted again.  (June 2011)
  • R v M (Manchester) : Diminished Responsibility under the new legislation (March 2011)
  • R v K (Newcastle) : Murder in the course of robbery (February 2011)
  • R v S (Sheffield and Court of Appeal) : Alleged jury nobbling and impact of S.44 Criminal Justice Act 2003 (application for non-jury trial) (May to December 2010)
  • R v M.K (Bradford) : Murder of shopkeeper, Gurmail Singh (September to October 2010)
  • R v B (Manchester) : Murder - shooting in course of armed robbery (June 2010)
  • R v M.S (Newcastle) : Murder - baby killing, causation and diminished responsibility (May 2010)
  • R v R (Teesside) : Abuse of Process - alleged forced repatriation of major criminal from Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.  Admissibility of evidence obtained without formal diplomatic channels (April 2010)
  • R v F (Nottingham) : Murder - gangland killing (January 2010)
  • R v M (Old Bailey) : Murder - Fitness to Plead and Insanity (December 2009)
  • R v S.C (Newcastle) : Abuse of Process - Police wrongly searching client files when arresting solicitor.  Prosecution stayed (July 2009)
  • R v L (Liverpool) : Murder - Provocation and Diminished Responsibility run together (April 2009)
  • R v Antoine Anderson (Supreme Court of Bermuda) : Murder by shooting (complex ballistics and firearms residue evidence) (February 2009)
  • R v Erskine (Manchester) : Murder in the course of robbery (December 2008)
  • R v J.C.J (Newcastle) : Police Corruption - misfearance in Public Office (October 2008)
  • R v E.V : Endangered Species - Corporate liability under Countryside & Wildlife Act
  • R v A.D (Leeds) : Murder - Gangland execution and torture (July 2008)
  • R v E (Newcastle) : Firearms case, Abuse of Process (April 2008)
  • R v Clough (Woolwich) : Massive importation of Class A drugs (April 2008)
  • R v S (Manchester) : Massive importation of Class A drugs (March 2008)
  • R v Laurence (Old Bailey) : Murder
  • R v B (Newcastle) : Attempted Murder, Firearms (December 2007)
  • R v T (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) : (December 2007)
  • R v Edwards (Manchester) : Patricide Murder (2007)
  • Mitchell v MIB : (2007)
  • R v Rigdy (Manchester) : Murder (2007)
  • R v S (Leeds) : Baby killing - over 20 paediatric specialists giving expert evidence (2007)
  • R v Razzaq (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) : The Sharon Beshenivski (Bradford Policewoman) murder (2006)
  • R v H (Bradford) : Murder by Arson (2006)
  • R v Curtis Ruthven (Manchester) : Alleged gangland revenge killing (2006)
  • R v Ogmeide (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) : Voodoo and ritual practice by Nigerian nationals (2006)
  • R v Abbot (Liverpool) : Alleged gangland killing (2006)
  • R v Parkes (Caernarfon) : Murder (2006)
  • "Operation Caddy" (Snaresbrook) : Undercover operation in Costa Del Sol and elsewhere leading to a series of trials of major drug dealers and involving law enforcement agencies from Spain, United States, Netherlands, Republic of Ireland and Columbia.  Complex issues of international law, international co-operation, extradition, entrapment, agent provocateur and commissions rogatoir DTA.  Proceedings including multi-million pound assets abroad. (2002 to 2006)
  • R v Whittaker (Manchester) : Counterfeiting cases including undercover journalists and entrapment issues regarding the BBC (2005)
  • R v Stephenson-Snell (Manchester) : Halloween 'Barbie-Doll' killer (2005)
  • "Operation Aberdeen" (Nottingham) : Complex fraud involving food safety issues (alleged laundering of condemed poultry meat through food chain.  Multi-agency prosecution involving Fraud Squad, Food Standards Agency and Environmental Health Officials (2004)
  • R v Collings (Newcastle-upon-Tyne) : Alleged murder by arson.  Conviction overturned by Court of Appeal (2004)
  • R v Lydiate & Others (Manchester) : Gangland torture case (2001)
  • R v Tantram & Others (Hull) : Complex fraud involving food safety issues (2000)

Court of Appeal

  • R v M : Reference by CCRC after seven-year Police investigation into miscarriage of justice re: Murder conviction - pending consideration by Supreme Court (October 2009)
  • R v Barker : Murder - Sentence/minimum term Sched. 21 CJA 2003.  Adjustment of minimum term for good behaviour.
  • R v King : Definition of Rape - one offence or three
  • R v Miller : Murder - sentence/minimum term.  CJA 2003.  Definition of torture.
  • R v Adams : 7-day Appeal leading to 15-year old conviction for murder being overturned (CCRC) (2006)

Professional Memberships & Publications

  • North Eastern Circuit
  • Criminal Bar Association
  • Personal Injury Bar Association
  • Professional Negligence Bar Association