James Elvidge

  • Year of Call 2016
  • |
  • Solicitor 2001

James has extensive experience in defending since 1999 across the criminal spectrum, and over 10 years of solid experience as an advocate in the Crown Court.

Career Overview

James has dedicated his career to being a criminal law specialist since 1999, with experience in all areas of the profession as he moved through the ranks; clerking for Counsel, a police station representative, Solicitor, Solicitor Advocate in the Crown Court and now Barrister.

James’s broad career experience gives him a unique skill set with an ability to reassure and support the most vulnerable and challenging of clients whilst ensuring the confidence of those who are more sophisticated and knowledgeable.

As an advocate, James is known for his fearless approach and tactical awareness. No matter how daunting the prosecution case, James prides himself on standing shoulder to shoulder with his lay clients, developing a close professional relationship whilst boldly pursing their defence.

Client Testimonials

'James is a fantastic barrister who has a work ethic second to none. He has a relaxed, charming and unflappable nature which puts his clients at ease. However, he always has intricate knowledge of the evidence in his case which he is able to recall at will that he uses to great affect for his client's.

I have instructed James on a variety of matters and have always been impressed with the results achieved. I have always noted that the client's have all commented on how grateful they were for that James represented them at court. If the client is happy, I am happy. James makes me happy.' - Michael Herford, Cartwright King Solicitors (Recommended Lawyer Legal 500, 2020)

'I have worked with James for some years now and am always amazed at how adept he is at dealing with all manner of cases. Be it multi handed fraud or one defendant charged with simple money laundering.

James always assists his instructing solicitors by attending conferences and providing advices as and when necessary. He has excellent people skills and is well liked by clients, lawyers and opponents alike.

James is our preferred choice for counsel because he is technically very good and a very able advocate. His attention to detail is second to none. Diary permitting, he is very loyal and happy to step in and help at short notice, and is very skilled at picking up even large cases with minimum instructions and preparing them very well.' - Kishoree Kotecha-Pau, Freemans Solicitors (Recommended Lawyer Legal 500, 2020)

Areas of Expertise

James is instructed as both a leading and led advocate and has worked with a number of the best silks and juniors in the profession. He is experienced across the full gamut of criminal litigation including, inter alia, murder, complex fraud, violent assaults and public disorder, large-scale drug conspiracies, human trafficking, firearms, sexual and regulatory crime and POCA.

As a solicitor, James worked for a number of leading criminal law firms with a reputation as a rigorous and meticulous litigator and advocate. He is therefore au fait with the needs and demands faced by his professional clients and works closely with them to ensure their own client’s case is pursued to the highest standard whilst his solicitor’s interests are advanced and protected.

Notable Cases

Murder, Serious Violence & Organised Crime

R v R – Canterbury Crown Court (Ongoing)

Conspiracy to traffic vulnerable workers into the UK for the purpose of exploitation. - More information here.

R v Y – Derby Crown Court (2018, led by Ayaz Qazi) - Murder

D admitted to shooting victim as a warning and not in an attempt to murder. Complex disclosure and evidential issues. - More information here.

R v C – Snaresbrook Crown Court (2018, led by Milly Pinkus) - Firearms

Conspiracy to supply an arsenal of firearms including military assault rifles smuggled into the UK from Eastern Europe. D admitted presence during sale but acquitted.

R v P – Blackfriars Crown Court (2018) - Firearms

Defendant found in possession of an arsenal of weapons including a number of working IEDs. Involved complex legal argument regarding the application of statue law to the facts of this case.

R v E – Central Criminal Court (2017) - Murder

Victim named D as assailant who had attempting to murder him with a knife. D acquitted of both attempted murder and possession of an offence weapon but guilty of GBH and sentenced as a secondary party having been placed as the principle throughout the trial.

R v S – Birmingham Crown Court (2016, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Getaway driver acquitted of murder. - More infromation here.

R v H – Blackfriars Crown Court (2016)

Defendant associated with the unlawful disposal of victim. - More information here.

R v D – Southwark Crown Court (2015, led by David Batcup) - Murder

Murder of victim by being thrown from the top story of a block of flats.

R v T – Central Criminal Court (2015, led by Abbas Lakha QC)

Joint enterprise murder (one of the first cases to be heard on appeal post R v Jogee). - More information here.

R v E – Central Criminal Court (2014, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Attempted murder of NCA officer by Turkish gang. Defendant acquitted despite being positively identified by an NCA officer. - More information here.

R v M – Central Criminal Court (2014, led by Michael Holland QC)

Murder acquittal for vulnerable defendant who admitted stabbing her boyfriend.

R v M – Central Criminal Court (2014, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC) - Turkish gang murder

Represented the alleged gunman driven by the defendant in R v S (below) Acquitted. - More information here.

R v F – Central Criminal Court (2014, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Successful use of the new (at the time) defence allowing home occupiers to use excessive force that results in death.

R v N – Southwark Crown Court (2014, led by Jeremy Carter-Manning QC)

Defendant acquitted of murder although actively involved in the assault of the victim.

R v A – Central Criminal Court (2014, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Turkish gang realted multi-handed murder trial (reported appeal, Lunkulu and Ors v R [2015] EWCA Crim 1350) - More information here.

R v T – Central Criminal Court (2013, led by Abbas Lakha QC)

Succesful acquital of defendant following cut throat by co-defendant.

R v K – Central Criminal Court (2013, led by Brian O’Neil QC )

Trial and retrial for the Attempted murder of a rival Turkish gang member.

R v S – Central Criminal Court (2013, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Turkish internecine gang murder. Defendant acquitted despite admitting driving gunmen to and from scene. More information here.

R v J – Central Criminal Court (2012, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

The Boxing Day murder in the Footlocker store on Oxford Street. Successful acquittal pleading self-defence notwithstanding the fact that the defendant admitting carrying a knife. - More infroamtion here.

R v C – Birmingham Crown Court (2012, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Multi-handed conspiracy to murder requiring jury and witness anonymity. Defendant acquitted of perverting the course of justice following successful half-time submission. - More information here.

R v A – Kingston Crown Court (2011, led by David Batcup)

Turkish gang related attempted murder of a rival by shooting. More information here.

R v T – Central Criminal Court (2010/2011, led by Michael Bromley-martin QC)

‘Peckham Boys’ gang member accused of two separate contract killings and GBH. Acquitted of murder following a re-trial that saw detailed legal argument about abuse of process and RIPA 2000 applications.  - More information here.

Fraud / Theft

R v A – Bristol Crown Court (2018)

Multi-handed conspiracy to launder the proceeds of the sale of gold purchased using the proceeds of crime. More information here.

R v F – Reading Crown Court (2017)

D accused of stealing thousands from the local authorities community centre. Exposed serious malpractice at the council. More information here.

R v Li – Basildon Crown Court (2016)

Illegal importation of cigarettes valued in excess of £10mil. Defendant acquitted.

R v W – Kingston Crown Court (2016)

Large scale theft of gold bullion.

R v K – Harrow Crown Court (2015)

‘Cash for Crash’ conspriracy. Defendant acquitted.

R v O – Blackfriars Crown Court (2015)

Large scale mobile phone fraud. Defendant acquitted.

R v C – Central Criminal Court (2015, led by Abbas Lakha QC)

Multi million pound en primeur wine fraud. More information here.

R v C – Harrow Crown Court (2013/2014, led by Annette Henry QC)

Multi-handed immigration fraud that required three trials before verdicts. Defendant only acquittal from eight defendants.


R v C – Kingston Crown Court (2019)

Taxi driver accused of being the personal driver for a top end multi-kilo cocaine dealer successfully acquitted.

R v N – Woolwich Crown Court (2018)

Conspiracy to import over 50kg of cocaine directly from Colombia via privately hired jets. More information here.

R v S – Southwark Crown Court (2016)

Conspiracy to supply in excess of 30kg of cocaine

R v P – Kingston Crown Court (2016)

Conspiracy to supply in excess of 100kg of cocaine

R v S – St Albans Crown Court (2013)

Large-scale importation of cutting agents for use with Class A drugs.

R v A – Blackfriars Crown Court (2012)

Defendant acquitted of possession with intent to supply 5kg of cocaine following successful submission of no case to answer regarding the legal definition of ‘possession’.

R v M – Kingston Crown Court (2011, led by Michael Bromley-Martin QC)

Conspiracy to supply ship borne cocaine with a street value of £1 Billion. M acquitted following extensive legal argument.

R v M – Snaresbrook Crown Court (2010)

Conspiracy to supply approximately 40kg of cocaine.


LB of Hounslow v Riat  - Isleworth Crown Court (2023)

In a prosecution brought by London Borough of Hounslow, the local authority sort a confiscation order in excess of £700,000, the defendant having a property portfolio worth millions of pounds. The case involved complicated issues concerning contested beneficial interests, options for sale, registered charges, probate, property located abroad, satellite litigation and tainted gifts. Following difficult negotiations, the local authority agreed to accept a much reduced benefit figure of £250k and realisable assets in the region of £500k. 

R v E – Basildon Crown Court (2011)

Environmental Agency prosecution regarding EU waste shipment regulations. Interlocutory appeal as to the mens rea required.

Sexual Crime

R v M – Basildon Crown Court (2019) - D accused of making indecent images of children found on his mobile phone

Prosecution offered no evidence having been persuaded that the evidence was not such as to make a conviction likely.

R v H – Luton Crown Court (2018) - D confessed to a serious of serious sexual assault on a minor

Sentenced to a Suspended Sentence Order

R v S – Isleworth Crown Court (2017)

School teacher accused of sexually assaulting two students who supported each other’s accounts. D acquitted.

R v D – Wood Green Crown Court (2017)

D accused of serious sexual assault by female friend with corroborating witness. D acquitted


  • Liverpool University (BA Hons) (1994)
  • University of Sussex (CPE) (1995)
  • University of Westminster (PGDip Legal Practice) (1998)

Other Information

James is an avid cook and traveller and enjoys nothing better than spending lazy days with his children when allowed!

Professional Memberships
  • Middle Temple
  • Criminal Bar Association
Latest News

James Elvidge negotiates substantial reduction in liability in confiscation proceedings

July 14 2023

In the London Borough of Hounslow v Riat, the local authority sort a confiscation order in excess of £700,000, the...

James Elvidge secures acquittal in 100kg conspiracy to supply cocaine case

May 05 2023

Operation Scorecard was an investigation into a conspiracy to supply Class A and B drugs that were couriered from Liverpool...

Claire Davies KC leading James Elvidge secure acquittal in murder trial

October 25 2022

Claire Davies KC and James Elvidge were instructed to represent a client accused of murder. It was alleged he had...

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