Crime (Joint Head of Criminal Team)
Year of call: 1991
Russell Pyne is Joint Head of 2KBW’s Criminal Team. He has 25 years of experience in prosecuting and defending criminal cases of gravity and complexity, including homicides, drug importations and conspiracies, fraud and all types of sexual offences.
Russell is a Grade 4 CPS prosecutor, and approved to take instructions from the CPS Rape and Serious Sexual Offences units on both the Western and South Eastern Circuits. He has lectured police on methods of effectively presenting police evidence in the courtroom. He is an approved pupil supervisor.
Russell has particular experience in dealing with witnesses who have vulnerabilities – children and the very old, and those who have problems with their physical or mental health. He is a ‘Vulnerable Witness Facilitator’, responsible for coordinating the training of members of 2KBW as to the new requirements for dealing with such witnesses.
Russell’s cases in 2019 – 2020 (pre Covid-19) included:
- R v C, Isleworth C.C, March 2020: prosecuting historic allegations of indecency within a care home against a member of staff.
- R v E, D, F, Hereford C.C, November – December 2019: prosecuting to convictions a trial of three men for armed robberies.
- Operation Kimber (led by William Mousley QC), Winchester C.C, November 2019: successfully defending, over a three week trial, a man accused of the gross negligence manslaughter of his elderly mother.
- Operation Rate (leading Rob Harding), Salisbury C.C, October 2019: defending, over a three week trial, a woman accused of being part of a complex and substantial conspiracy to deal Class A drugs.
- R v S, H, H, A, A, Wolverhampton C.C, August – September 2019: prosecuting five defendants, over a three week trial, for various allegations of ‘gang violence’, including a section 18 assault and an arson attack.
- R v M and C, Blackfriars C.C, July – August 2019: prosecuting to convictions a trial of a seven-year conspiracy to receive, convert and export to Bangladesh many hundreds of mobile telephones.
- R v H, Birmingham C.C, July 2019: prosecuting to convictions allegations of rape made by a child against her grandfather.
- R v C and another, Isle of Wight C.C, April – May 2019, successfully defending at trial a man accused of child cruelty.
- Operation Baldock (leading Alex Kettle-Williams), Inner London C.C, March – April 2019: defending, over a five week trial, the alleged ring-leader of a substantial conspiracy to defraud members of the public and to convert the proceeds. Russell and Alex were asked to take over the defence mid-trial, after previous instructed counsel had withdrawn.
- Rv V, Kingston C.C, March 2019: successfully prosecuting a man who had conned a series of women he met on a dating site for over £1 million.
- R v M, K, R, A, Warwick C.C, 2019 – successfully prosecuting four security guards employed at a delivery centre for very substantial fraudulent activity.
Russell’s current cases which await trial include:
- R v S & A, Birmingham C.C: prosecuting two defendants, against QC and junior, on an allegation of attempted murder by shooting.
- R v J and others, Southampton C.C: defending a mn accused of defrauding his local NHS Trust.
- R v Aylesbury C.C: prosecuting allegations of indecency committed by a Doctor.
Other Cases (Violence)
- R v A & H (Birmingham C.C, 2018): prosecuting to convictions two defendants who had left their victim with brain injury and in a coma.
- R v J & G (Kingston C.C, 2018): prosecuting to convictions a nine day trial against two defendants on serious firearms offences.
- R v P, C (Kingston C.C, 2017): prosecuting to conviction an ‘acid attack’ on a member of a rival gang.
- R v N, (Winchester C.C, 2017): prosecuting (led by Sally Howes QC), to conviction a murder with a background of domestic violence.
- R v C (Reading C.C, 2016): prosecuting to conviction a section 18 stabbing which left the victim with life changing injuries.
- R v H (Oxford C.C, 2016): prosecuting to conviction a woman accused of the abduction of her own child.
Other Cases (Sexual Offences)
- R v G (Aylesbury C.C, 2018): prosecuting to conviction a man who raped his 11 year old daughter.
- R v C (Southampton C.C, 2016): successfully defending a man accused of breaking into the house of a 101 year old woman and then attempting to rape her: the trial required extremely delicate and careful cross-examination, over a link to a nursing home, of the complainant.
- R v S (Oxford C.C / Blackfriars C.C, 2016): prosecuting, over two trials, against a QC and a junior, an Oxford university undergraduate accused of rape.
Other Cases (Fraud):
- R v H (Lincoln C.C, 2018): successfully defending a woman accused of laundering the proceeds of crime for her partner.
- Operation Launch (Blackfriars C.C, 2017): this was London’s ‘Oyster Card cloning fraud’, a complex , lucrative and lengthy criminal operation utilising technology, ticket machines … and many thousands of blank white plastic cards. After many defendants entered guilty pleas, Russell successfully prosecuted the remaining five suspects, including the two ‘ring leaders’.
- R v C and others – acting as a Leading Junior, prosecuting a seven week trial of nine youths accused of Section 18 GBH and violent disorder
- Operation Lamb – acting for a senior police officer accused of misfeasance in a public office and perverting the course of justice
- R v L – defending a man accused of a £35,000 confidence fraud of a vulnerable victim
- Operation Topic – defending one of twelve defendants accused of the kidnap and false imprisonment, over a four day period, of a businessman, with the demand of a £1 million ransom
- R v K – defending a police officer accused of raping his daughter
- R v F – acting as junior to Queen’s Counsel in a three week trial of a man accused of raping his own four children
- R v C – prosecuting a two week trial of historic allegation of indecency, acting against Queen’s Counsel
- R v M – acting alone, prosecuting an allegation of causing death by dangerous driving
- Operation Crossbow – acting as Leading Junior in a seven week trial, for a woman accused of allowing her own children to be sexually assaulted by her husband and his friends
- LLB Bristol
- Inner Temple (Advocacy Award)
- Approved pupil supervisor
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