David Nathan QC

  • Year of Silk 2002
  • Year of Call 1971


During the 1980s, David led in numerous high-profile and serious cases including two of the trials resulting from the Brinks Matt gold bullion robbery (which were at the time the largest of their kind ever in the UK). David also went on to lead in a number of armed robbery cases involving particular members of the Arif family and their associates. He also represented Ronnie O'Sullivan (the father) for murder.

Then in the 1990s, David led at the Central Criminal Court for Kevin Cressey, charged alongside a police officer with drug and corruption offences in what became known as the Panorama Corruption trial, because the client had gone to the BBC with his story. During the course of that decade, however, most of David's leading work involved the very large importation and supply of Class A and B drugs, serious violence, and fraud, for example, Belchamber and others (Southwark Crown Court) was the alcohol diversion fraud which finally exposed the London City Bond as informants and led to a number of successful appeals in other cases.

David's first case in Silk in 2002 was the defence of a survivor of the Paddington Rail crash who had inflicted multiple stab wounds on a complete stranger and was found to be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Since then his cases have involved most aspects of serious crime, including gangland and domestic murder, firearms, armed robbery, drug trafficking, counterfeit steroids, serious sexual offences, fraud, revenue offences and money laundering.

He defended Colin Ash Smith charged with the brutal murder of a school girl following a cold case review, and Trooper Williams the first soldier prosecuted in a civil court for the murder of an Iraqi civilian in Basra.

Recently, among many others, he has represented the deputy manager of a care home accused of raping one of its residents with a mental age of four, a young man charged with the manslaughter of a friend who died from positional asphyxia when he became trapped in the rungs of a loft ladder, and a business man charged with a multi-million pound fraud on Barclays Bank.

In the last 18 months his cases have included—

R v Paul Edmunds at Birmingham Crown Court, a firearms dealer who imported and supplied hand guns, many antique, and manufactured and supplied ammunition identified in over one hundred shooting incidents, many fatal.

R v Sean Henderson at Sheffield Crown Court, charged for fraudulent trading and company fraud.

R v Ataul Mustafa at Derby Crown Court, for the murder of his wife in the course of a prolonged assault over several days in which he inflicted injury with a broken hanger and a scalding iron, having carried out an identical attack upon his previous wife some years before.

R v Ide Faysal at Reading Crown Court, for robbery and manslaughter in which the victim fell to his death from a second storey window while trying to escape.

R v Devante Omir at Northampton Crown Court, for his alleged part in a gang related murder.

R v Antonio Ziu at Luton Crown Court, for a series of allegedly gang related reprisal attacks in the Bedford area, one of which involved a drive by shooting.

David has extensive experience of dealing with forensic experts, including forensic pathologists, psychiatrists and accountants, DNA, mobile telephone and cell site, facial mapping, and voice recognition and linguistic experts.

Apart from crime, David has also undertaken VAT tribunal work and a fact finding hearing in the Family Division of the High Court.

Notable Cases

R v D and Otrs (Northampton Crown Court): acting on behalf of the principal defendant who was acquitted of a fraud on Northamptonshire County Council, cheating the Revenue and money-laundering offences

R v S J and Otrs (Central Criminal Court): one of two brothers who was acquitted in respect of a gang murder where the two principal victims were attacked by pit bulls and stabbed.

R v C H and Otrs (Wood Green Crown Court): representing principal defendant who was acquitted of trafficking prostitutes both from Romania and within the UK, controlling prostitution, and multiple rape on women.

R v T S (Woolwich Crown Court): represented for firearms offences.

R v J and Otrs (Preston Crown Court): represented one of the principal defendants in a gangland murder in which it was alleged that a rival drug dealer was made to drink petrol before being burned to death in a car. The trial was stayed after many months and the Judge ordered an enquiry into the conduct of the police.

R v T W (Central Criminal Court): the first soldier to be tried by a civil court rather than by Court Martial for murdering a civilian in Iraq.

R v N and Otrs (Wolverhampton Crown Court): more than half a ton of cocaine imported from South America where the defence was one of duress from serious criminals originally resident in Southern Spain and later South Africa.

R v S P  (Snaresbrook Crown Court): conspiracy to import massive quantities of cocaine through Belgium and Holland.

R v R F (Blackfriairs Crown Court): a string of importations over many years of many tons of cannabis and very large quantities of cocaine from South Africa into the UK.

R v C A S (Inner London Crown Court): historic murder trial of a schoolgirl in 1993.

R v H (Guildford Crown Court): represented the deputy head of a care home for the rape of a resident with a mental age of a young child.

R v C (Southwark Crown Court): represented the principal defendant in a multi-million pound fraud against Barclay's bank.

R v G (Guildford Crown Court): represented the principal defendant charged with blackmail against the CEO & Chairman of major distribution company.


R v DH Birmingham CC

DH was involved in an allegedly gang related shootout in the city centre. DH was seen on CCTV opening the driver’s door of the car while the gunman fired several shots at close range, three of which hit and killed the driver. DH was acquitted of murder and possessing a firearm with intent but convicted of manslaughter.


R v DB Central Criminal Court

A fugitive gang leader living in Turkey provided a hit list to the principal defendant who recruited a number of associates to carry out three conspiracies to murder, or, in the alternative, three conspiracies to cause grievous bodily harm with intent. DB was a long term associate of the principle defendant, whose home was bugged and who had use of an Encro phone. Indeed the two of them were captured on CCTV acquiring a loaded hand gun with which DB was arrested in a cab minutes later. DB was convicted of firearms offences but acquitted of the alleged conspiracies.

T v TK Sheffield Crown Court

TK and others were involved in the fatal shooting of a solicitor in the City Centre

R v LC Guildford Crown Court

LC took part in an arranged fist fight with the victim on a travellers’ site in Surrey. During the course of the fight produced a knife and inflicted multiple stab wounds one of which was life threatening and required urgent surgery. LC was acquitted of attempted murder and causing grievous bodily harm with intent and convicted only of unlawful wounding.


LLB (Hons), University of Manchester


Fraud Lawyers Association

Direct Access

David is accredited to accept work under Direct access, also known as Public access, in suitable cases. In order to instruct David on a Direct access basis, contact the clerks on +44 (0) 20 7242 6476 or at clerks@33bedfordrow.co.uk.