Details of practice

Described as ‘a fabulous silk’ and as having ‘an outstanding reputation’, Hugo is recognised as one of the legal profession’s leading QC’s. He was named as one of the UK’s ‘Stars at the Bar’ in the Chambers and Partners 2015 guide to the UK Bar, and is currently recommended in six practice areas.

He was a member of the ‘A’ Panel of civil Treasury Counsel for 8 years, during which time he regularly appeared on matters of public and criminal law both on behalf of Government departments and as amicus curiae before the High Court, Court of Appeal and House of Lords. He has appeared in 14 cases before the House of Lords/Supreme Court. He won the Chambers and Partners award for criminal barrister of the year 2008, and took silk in 2009.

As well as his regular appearances in the High Court and Supreme Court, he has been instructed in some of the most high profile cases of recent years. He represented The Queen in the Inquest into the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, and Malcolm Calvert in the Cazenove inside dealing case. He was then appointed leading Counsel to the Inquests into the London Bombings of 7 July 2005 and, subsequently, appeared in the Leveson Inquiry on behalf of Rebekah Brooks and in the Tchenguiz action against the SFO.

Notable cases in 2013-2015 include the Gary McKinnon case, the Shrien Dewani extradition (in which he successfully represented the Republic of South Africa), the Inquest into the death of Mark Duggan (Hugo represented the Metropolitan Police Commissioner), the Inquest into the death of Alexander Litvinenko (on behalf of Boris Berezovsky), the Hermitage Capital affair, and the SFO investigations into LIBOR, Alstom and Swift (Nigeria). He appeared in the Hong Kong Court of Final Appeal and advised on the UK’s first Deferred Prosecution Agreement (Standard Bank Plc).

Hugo is frequently instructed by companies, high net-worth individuals, and politically exposed persons relating to all aspects of extradition (including advising on Interpol and on international restraint), international criminal/corporate liability, and sanctions.  He is currently advising individuals or corporate bodies in relation to some of the most significant current SFO investigations, including Autonomy/Hewlett Packard, Barclays/Qatar, Euribor, Forex and Airbus.

He is a renowned appellate advocate, and has appeared in a significant number of leading criminal cases in the UK higher courts, relating to all aspects of criminal law. He has appeared in the HK Court of Final Appeal.

Main areas of practice

  • Extradition and mutual legal assistance
  • Serious and complex crime, and appellate hearings
  • Public and administrative law
  • Inquests and Public Inquiries
  • Restraint, sanctions and confiscation

Directory recommendations

‘An exceptional barrister with far-reaching expertise who is often instructed in some of the most challenging international cases’.  Chambers UK 2017:  Crime

‘Extremely clever and has a brilliant rapport with the judiciary.’  Chambers UK 2017:  Crime

‘An absolutely outstanding extradition specialist who is head and shoulders above the majority of the pack.’  Chambers UK 2017:  Extradition

‘He is exceptionally good and he’s very smooth with clients and very well prepared.’  Chambers UK 2017:  Extradition

‘Extraordinary well-regarded and someone with huge intellect.’ 
Chambers UK 2017:  Extradition

‘He’s fantastic in front of a jury and his attention to detail is unparalleled.’ 
Chambers UK 2017:  Crime

One of the few people at the Bar who combines expertise in criminal and public law.’
Chambers UK 2017:  Financial Crime

‘A versatile, clever lawyer who is very easy to work with.  Super bright.’
Chambers UK 2017:  Admin and Public Law

‘As a renowned criminal silk, he is a particularly popular choice for inquests which involve parallel criminal proceedings.’  Chambers UK 2017:  Inquests

‘One of the best silks you can ask for.’  The Legal 500 2016:  Fraud

Education/professional qualifications

MA Hons Magdalen College, Oxford
Elected Member of the Bar Council 1995-1998


Member of Treasury “B” Panel 1995
Member of Treasury “A” Panel 2001
Queen’s Counsel 2009
Bencher of Gray’s Inn 2013

Notable cases


  • US v Lotfi Raissi (who was accused by the US of complicity in the terrorist attacks of 11th September 2001)
  • Govt of India v Quattrocchi (Italian businessman allegedly linked to Bofors scandal)
  • Russia v Boris Berezovsky (exiled opponent of President Putin)
  • Kenneth Noye (whether extradition granted on undertaking of no life sentence)
  • France v Ramda (wanted in connection with bombings of the Paris Metro)
  • US v Abu Hamza (wanted by the US in connection with terrorist offences)
  • US v Bermingham (the ‘Natwest 3’)
  • US v Tollmans
  • Rwanda v Brown (the request for the extradition of four persons accused of genocide)
  • Italy v David Mills and Silvio Berlusconi (Italian mutual assistance request)
  • US v Viktor Kozeny (long running US extradition request to The Bahamas)
  • Russia v Nikitin and Skarga (former CEO of Sovcomflot)
  • Russia v Azarov (Volgotanker)
  • US v Ian Norris (cartel fraud extradition)
  • Crete v Herdman and others (“the Crete Six”)
  • US v Tesler (lawyer accused of corruption)
  • US v Gary McKinnon (computer ‘hacking’ extradition)
  • UAE v Lodhi (request by UAE)
  • SA v Dewani (murder allegation in SA)
  • Rozanski v Poland (SC; time limits in extradition)
  • HH and PH (SC; Art 8 rights of children)
  • RF v Trevilov (‘corporate raiding’)
  • US v Maxim Bakiev (son of former President of Kyrgyzstan)
  • Ukraine v Kononko (BTA Bank case)
  • Bill Browder/Hermitage Capital
  • US request for extradition of Dmitry Firtash
  • Serious Fraud Office v Zlochevsky (restraint of assets; Ukrainian Minister)
  • Malabu Oil and Gas Ltd v DPP (restraint of assets; Nigerian Minister)
  • Puceviciene v Lithuanian Judicial Authority (leading case on section 12A)


  •  Security Industry Authority v Securiplan; R(Securiplan) v SIA
  •  Civil Aviation Authority v Travel Republic
  •  Financial Services Authority v Calvert
  •  Torex (misstatement of accounts)
  • Rebekah Brooks
  • Swift: Nigerian corruption
  • SFO LIBOR investigation
  • The Special Tribunal for Lebanon
  • Autonomy/Hewlett Packard (alleged accounting irregularities)
  • R v Austin [2014] 1 WLR 1045 (PII; closed procedure)
  • DLA Piper UK LLP v BDO LLP [2013] EWHC 3970 (wasted costs)
  • Dahdaleh/Akin Gump (wasted costs application)
  • R v Johnson (LIBOR)
  • HKSAR v SZE Mei Mun (HKSAR appeal concerning prosecution disclosure)
  • SFO Forex investigation
  • Euribor
  • Airbus
  • Unaoil

 Public law

  • R v Manchester Stipendiary Magistrate ex parte Granada HL (legality of cross-border warrant)
  • R(Bulger) v Secretary of State DC (challenge to Home Secretary’s tariff in Bulger case)
  • R v Spear HL (court-martial system)
  • A-G’s Ref (No 2 of 2001) HL (whether breach of Art 6 requires stay)
  • R(Mullen) v SSHD HL (statutory and ex gratia compensation)
  • R(Williamson) v Sec State Education HL (corporal punishment/ECHR)
  • Ward v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis HL (legality of mental health warrant)
  • Ayliffe v DPP HL (war protestors)
  • R(Da Silva) v DPP (the judicial review claim arising out of the Stockwell shooting case)
  • Inquest into the death of Diana, Princess of Wales (representing The Queen, instructed by the Attorney General)
  • DPP v Haw (demonstration outside Parliament)
  • R(Corner House) v SFO HL (the judicial review of the SFO’s decision to discontinue the corruption investigation   into BAe)
  • Mark Saunders inquest (inquest into the shooting of a London barrister)
  • SSHD v AF (No 3) (leading case on Control Orders and Art 6)
  • Inquests into the London bombings of 7th July 2005 (leading Counsel to the Inquests)
  • Leveson Inquiry (Rebekah Brooks)
  • Litvinenko Inquest (on behalf of Boris Berezovsky)
  • The Tchenguiz litigation (against the SFO)
  • CC and CF v Secretary of State (Control Order and TPIM proceedings)
  • CF and MA (damages claim against the MOD and UK intelligence agencies)
  • The Mark Duggan inquest
  • Dr Adam v Metropolitan Police Service [2014] EWHC 840 Admin (police warrants)
  • R(Akarcay) v Chief Constable of West Yorkshire (non-recognition of TRNC; police assistance)

He is Special Advocate in control order proceedings under the PTA 2005