Michael is a specialist trial Barrister who has been appearing in the Crown Court for 19 years . His instructions have included as Leading Counsel. He has been in legal practice for over 20 years, firstly as a solicitor and subsequently, and presently, as a Barrister. He heads the Crime Department’s in-house advocacy team and is joint head of the Department. He set up Freemans Crime Department and has continued to lead/co-lead it since, ensuring that it has maintained a reputation for high-quality work.
He has been recognised for his advocacy in Legal 500 for a number of years, being described in various editions as an ‘outstanding trial advocate‘ a ‘very committed and competent trial advocate‘, ‘very experienced‘ ‘talented‘ and an ‘excellent advocate‘. He is also ranked in Chambers and Partners, last year’s edition stating ‘He is excellent and knows the law back to front‘. ‘Michael is outstanding – his grasp of the finer details is something to behold‘. The current 2022 entry reads ‘A superb lawyer and an absolute pleasure to work with‘. ‘Michael is very experienced, knowledgeable and thorough, with a calm yet confident manner which was very reassuring‘.
He is regularly instructed in very serious and complex cases and has substantial experience. His instructions have included allegations of: murder; attempted murder; rape; indecent assault; sexual offences involving children; kidnap; very serious assaults, cases involving domestic violence; public order offences; robbery, including armed robbery; aggravated (GBH) burglary, large-scale importation and supply of drugs, money laundering; and serious fraud.
He enjoys a very impressive record in winning jury trials that he prepares meticulously. He has received positive feedback from judges, clients, solicitors, and peers. He also has an admirable record helping clients in road traffic and HMO cases.
He appeared in a 3-month serious trial as junior Counsel alone directly against well-regarded Queens Counsel (who was herself supported by two juniors) for the crown. That QC was awarded ‘silk of the year’ by Legal 500. Mr. Field’s client was the only member of the main 4-member family not to be convicted of at least one count.
He was also involved in a 2-month murder trial at the Central Criminal Court, which raised hugely complex issues of parasitic secondary participation. The trial judge described it as the most complicated joint enterprise murder trial she had presided over. The case was pre the Supreme Court decision in Jogee. His client was acquitted of Murder.
He was appointed by the Court of Appeal as junior Counsel to a leading QC in a murder appeal (CCRC referral) where he has represented the client post-conviction. The case has very complex expert evidence across a multitude of disciplines and was unsurprisingly described as ‘extremely complex’ by LJ Dyson at the first appeal
In 2017 he concluded a murder trial as junior to Queens Counsel that was one of a tiny number that explores the interface between assisted suicide and murder. The High Court trial Judge allowed a no case to answer submission on murder at the conclusion of the Crown’s case
He has been appointed as a specialist advocate under s. 4 (A) (2) of the Criminal Procedure (Insanity) Act 1964 to represent the interests of a Defendant found unfit to plead in the following GBH Trial. Such appointment being made after an assessment as to suitability by the experienced crown court judge, as per the guidance in (R v Norman  EWCA Crim 1810] to ensure that competent to fulfil that ‘‘‘difficult task’.
He also has successfully appeared as an advocate in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division).
He has provided legal training to senior lawyers and appeared as a guest university lecturer on criminal law . He is also an Independent Funding Adjudicator . This was an appointment made following a recommendation by an Advisory Assessment Panel to the Lord Chancellor.
The following represents a selection of the cases in which Michael has been instructed as advocate: –
*led by QC
** led junior
Michael provides specialist assistance in challenging investigations and prosecutions concerning Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs). He has represented a number of landlords relating to alleged breaches of both the licensing regime and the Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006
He can provide assistance where the local authority proposes a financial penalty for the offences set out in section 249A of the Housing Act 2004, and the matters set out in Part 2 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016.
In his spare time, Michael enjoys watching movies and football, particularly Arsenal, playing tennis and loves spending time with his family.
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