Incredibly responsive, bright and user-friendly …  a real star in the making.”

Very bright, a good academic lawyer and a good advocate, she is just a delight.”

Hugely approachable, always available and a real pleasure to deal with.”

(Chambers and Partners UK Bar 2018)

Regularly led by the top silks in the biggest cases

(Legal 500 UK Bar 2018)

Katherine accepts instructions in all of chambers’ areas of practice but specialises in corporate crime and investigations. She regularly appears in her own right, as well as working with more senior members of chambers.

Brings City-firm experience to the criminal bar

Before transferring to the Bar, Katherine practised for five years as a solicitor at a magic circle firm, where she focussed on banking and finance. She was heavily involved in litigation arising from the 2008 financial crisis.

Katherine is ranked as a leading junior in the field of Business and Regulatory Crime by the Legal 500 (Tier 3) and in Financial Crime by Chambers and Partners (Band 3). She is appointed to the C Panel of the Attorney General’s Counsel to the Crown (civil). Katherine is a contributor to Blackstone’s Criminal Practice and a member of the editorial board for Lloyds Law Reports: Financial Crime.


Legal 500 2017 C&P 2018


Corporate Crime and Investigations

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Katherine regularly advises on matters concerning:

  • Fraud
  • Bribery
  • Sanctions
  • The proceeds of crime

She is currently instructed in a number of major SFO investigations for corporate defendants, including several FTSE-100 companies.

Her recent work includes:

  • Acting for Rolls-Royce plc in the largest Deferred Prosecution Agreement to date (led by David Perry QC and Miranda Hill)
  • Acting in the appeal against conviction and sentencing arising from the Barclays LIBOR trial (led by Jonathan Crow QC)

Public and civil law

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Katherine has significant experience of judicial review and civil proceedings relating to the criminal justice system.

Recent work includes:

  • A challenge to the seizure of US$20 million by the City of London Police from traders on London’s oil derivatives market (led by David Perry QC)
  • A challenge by Soma Oil & Gas to the continuation of an SFO investigation (led by David Perry QC)
  • Appearing for the SFO in a challenge  to the lawfulness of section 2 notices (led by Helen Malcolm QC)
  • Acting for Liberty (as intervener) in a Supreme Court challenge to the legality of police “stop and search” powers under section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (led by Alex Bailin QC)

Katherine’s previous civil work includes:

  • Acting for the SFO in a £300 million damages claims brought by the Tchenguiz brothers, following an SFO investigation (led by James Eadie QC, Pushpinder Saini QC and Charlie Graham QC)
  • Acting for the Metropolitan Police in relation to the ‘undercover police officer’ claims (led by Jonathan Hall QC)



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Katherine is regularly instructed to provide advice and representation in criminal matters. She has been instructed to advise the Director of Public Prosecutions for Mauritius and the Director of Public Prosecutions for the Cayman Islands. Katherine was instructed by the Director of Service Prosecutions in the trial of Sgt Alexander Blackman (‘Marine A’), led by David Perry QC, and in the subsequent appeal following referral by the CCRC, led by Richard Whittam QC.


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Katherine has particular interest in inquests involving the criminal justice system, including deaths in custody and in cases where criminal proceedings have been completed or are in prospect.

Katherine acted for the family of Cheryl James, the trainee who died at Deepcut Barracks in 1995, in the 2016 inquest. She was also instructed by Liberty in the case of Sean Benton, another recruit who died at Deepcut Barracks in 1995, in the proceedings to secure a second inquest. (Led by Alison Foster QC.)

In 2013, Katherine co-represented the sisters of Anne-Marie Ellement, a Royal Military Policewoman who committed suicide, having been subject to a campaign of bullying following her allegation of rape against two colleagues.

Katherine also has experience of acting for families in prison inquests and subsequent civil claims.



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  • Criminal Dimensions, chapter in The UK Supreme Court Yearbook 2017 (forthcoming)
  • Contributor, Blackstone’s Criminal Practice 
  • Contributor, EU Law and Criminal Practice (Oxford University Press
  • Extra-territoriality and the Serious Crime Act 2007, New Law Journal, (August 2012)
  • Ellis and Simms v United Kingdom, EHRLR 2012 3
  • Hanif and Khan v United Kingdom, EHRLR 2012 1
  • Knaggs and Khacik v United Kingdom, EHLR 2011 7
  • G v United Kingdom, EHRLR 2011 6
  • Jobe v United Kingdom, EHRLR 2011 5
  • McKeown v United Kingdom, EHRLR 2011 3
  • Taxquet v Belgium, EHRLR 2011 2


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  • MA (Hons), History, Emmanuel College, Cambridge
  • MPhil, History, Emmanuel College, Cambridge
  • GDL, Oxford Brookes University
  • LPC, BPP (Distinction)


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  • Young Fraud Lawyers Association
  • Liberty (member of the Policy Council)

Privacy Notice

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To view Katherine Hardcastle’s Privacy Notice, please click here.

Notable cases

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Tchenguiz v SFO

Authority on the use of material disclosed in civil proceedings for the purposes of taking legal advice on the commission of offences.

R (Roberts) v Metropolitan Police Commissioner

Intervention by Liberty in a challenge to the legality of the police powers to “stop and search” without reasonable suspicion under section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.

Anne-Marie Ellement Inquest

Inquest into the suicide of Anne-Marie Ellement, a Royal Military Policewoman subject to a bullying campaign following her allegation of rape against two colleagues.

In Re Guardian News and Media and Others / R (Marine A) v Judge Advocate General

Challenge by news media organisations to the rulings as to the anonymity of “Marine A” and the trial judge’s ruling not to release headcam footage and certain photographs to the press.

Tchenguiz v SFO

Multi-million pound damages claim by the Tchenguiz brothers in which allegations include misfeasance in public office, false imprisonment and trespass.

Brazzill v Willoughby

Instructed by HM Treasury in its successful claim to recover funds held with the Bank of England following the collapse of Kaupthing Singer and Friedlander in October 2008 (as a solicitor).

Related news

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7 April

Barclays LIBOR trial

The re-trial of two Barclays traders, accused of manipulating LIBOR, concluded yesterday at Southwark Crown Court.  The defendants, Ryan Reich and Stylianos Contagoulas, were acquitted of conspiracy...

17 February

Top 10 set for Supreme Court appearances in 2016

We are delighted to have been recognised by The Lawyer Magazine as one of the top 10 sets in the country in terms of frequency of appearances before the Supreme Court in 2016. Seven of our members...

20 January

Attorney General's 'C' Panel (Civil)

Chambers is delighted to announce that Alistair Richardson and Katherine Hardcastle have been appointed to the Attorney General's 'C' Panel of Counsel to the Crown (Civil).    

18 January

Rolls-Royce plc Deferred Prosecution Agreement

Today the third, and largest, Deferred Prosecution Agreement was approved by the  President of the Queen's Bench Division. The agreement was reached between the Serious Fraud Office and Rolls-Royce...

14 October

New Deepcut Inquest

The High Court today ordered a second inquest into the death of Sean Benton, a recruit at Deepcut Barracks in 1995. The order was made under section 13 of the Coroners Act 1988, following an...

13 October

Application to terminate SFO investigation

The High Court (Gross LJ and Andrews J) yesterday handed down judgment in R (ota Soma Oil & Gas) v Director of the Serious Fraud Office. The case concerned an application for a mandatory order...

7 June

Deepcut Inquest Reaches Conclusion

On 3 June 2016, the Conclusion was delivered in the inquest into the death of Private Cheryl James at Deepcut Barracks, Surrey. Ms James was a trainee in the Royal Logistics Corps, who was killed by...

17 December

Supreme Court considers stop and search power

In R(Roberts) v Metropolitan Police Commissioner the Supreme Court considered the lawfulness of the power under section 60 of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to stop and search a...

8 May

Challenge to SFO Section 2 Notices

Katherine Hardcastle was instructed by the SFO in relation to a claim brought by BSG Resources, the Israeli diamond group, which sought to challenge the SFO's decisions to provide Mutual Legal...

31 July

Katherine Hardcastle in Tchenguiz case

Katherine Hardcastle was instructed by the Serious Fraud Office in its defence of the damages claim brought by Vincent and Robert Tchenguiz. The claims, which were said to be worth a total of £300...

8 May

Katherine Hardcastle joins Chambers

Katherine Hardcastle joins Chambers Chambers is delighted to announce that Katherine Hardcastle has joined Chambers upon successful completion of her pupillage.