Recommended solicitor for defending allegations of affray

Clients who are able to fund their case privately instruct Jim to defend them against allegations of affray. Facing such proceedings is daunting, particularly because they are (or should be) only instituted when there is a serious disturbance to public order. The offence is triable either way, so the case can be heard either in the magistrates’ court or the crown court and, if convicted, for all but the lowest culpability or the lowest category of harm (when there is little or no physical injury to others and only “some” fear or distress caused), the sentencing guidelines specify a starting point of imprisonment.

It is not uncommon for people to just be in “the wrong place at the wrong time“; they get caught up in a disturbance as they’re leaving the pub or a club and before they know it they’ve been scooped up by the police in the ensuing melee. Perhaps they were involved but were acting lawfully, in self defence or the defence of other innocent parties. Trying to unpick that early decision by the police to arrest can be difficult, particularly nowadays when police budgets and therefore their resources are squeezed ever tighter; their focus can quickly shift from an investigative role to one of securing a voluntary confession or, if that fails, getting the suspect charged and released so that they become someone else’s problem (i.e. the court’s). Errors may be compounded by lethargy or, worse, process corruption.

To increase your prospects of success, you need to instruct a solicitor early

Instructing Jim early greatly increases the prospects of a successful outcome for those falsely accused of a public order offence.

Jim takes a proactive approach to defending his clients, leaving no stone unturned or inquiry outstanding in the pursuit of his clients’ best interests. Unfortunately, such an approach is not funded by legal aid; the government doesn’t want you to have the “best defence” or instruct the “best lawyer” – it wants only to fund the bare minimum, which is not a position you want to take when your freedom, livelihood and reputation are on the line.

When clients instruct Jim they can expect him to work fast and purposefully to:

  • Secure and preserve evidence, such as:
    • CCTV footage, from street-facing cameras as well as those inside premises;
    • Body-worn camera footage from police and security staff;
    • The first accounts of eye witnesses.
  • Trace and interview potential witnesses;
  • Liaise with the police to ensure that they understand his client’s case and pursue all reasonable lines of inquiry;
  • Communicate with the police lawyers (Crown Prosecution Service [“CPS”]) and encourage them to drop the case.

If you are accused of affray, or any criminal offence for that matter, having a solicitor with over 25 years’ experience of criminal defence work really can make a difference. Securing Jim or another dedicated legal professional to work on your behalf is the first, essential, step you should take to ensure a favourable outcome.

How much will it cost?

If you instruct Jim, probably the first thing you will realise is that he is a straight-talking lawyer who provides honest and frank advice without any "BS". The same is also true about what he will tell you in relation to how much it will likely cost you to hire him, and he aims to be completely transparent about what he charges, what this pays for and how this compares to a lawyer being remunerated under legal aid. Jim believes this is the only way his clients can make a sensible, informed decision on how to proceed.

Jim has compiled a database of historical bills for matters in a single financial year to help him estimate how much a case will cost. Looking at this data there are 203 cases1 where:

  1. The main allegation was affray,
  2. There was a single defendant, who
  3. Pleaded not guilty, and
  4. Was subseqently tried before a jury in the Crown Court.

Based on this information, Jim's advice is:

  • The prosecution evidence in a typical case alleging affray normally runs to approximately 143 pages (note that this does not include CCTV, multi-media or digital evidence; nor does it include any unused material served by the prosecution [i.e. material which the prosecution believes may undermine its case or assist the case for the accused] or any evidence collected by the defence); the minimum number of pages was recorded as 8 and the maximum was 2,713;
  • A crown court trial where there is a single defendant and the main allegation is affray will normally comprise 15 prosecution witnesses and last around 4 days (the lowest number of witnesses recorded was 2 and the most was 56; the shortest trial recorded was 1 and the longest was 16);
  • For a trial lasting 4 days with 15 witnesses and a similar page count of 143 pages, Jim estimates the total cost (including VAT and the advocates fee but excluding any other disbursements) will be in the range of £33,420 to £52,860. This compares to the typical fee2 of £4,300 paid to the legal team under legal aid.

Graduated table of estimated fees, including VAT
Pages of Material Days in Court
1 day 2 days 3 days 4 days 5 days 6 days 7 days 8 days 9 days 10 days 11 days 12 days 13 days 14 days 15 days 16 days 17 days 18 days 19 days 20 days
1-50 £8,880-£13,620 £15,360-£24,300 £21,840-£34,980 £28,320-£45,660 £34,800-£56,340 £41,280-£67,020 £47,760-£77,700 £54,240-£88,380 £60,720-£99,060 £67,200-£109,740 £73,680-£120,420 £80,160-£131,100 £86,640-£141,780 £93,120-£152,460 £99,600-£163,140 £106,080-£173,820 £112,560-£184,500 £119,040-£195,180 £125,520-£205,860 £132,000-£216,540
51-100 £11,420-£17,220 £17,900-£27,900 £24,380-£38,580 £30,860-£49,260 £37,340-£59,940 £43,820-£70,620 £50,300-£81,300 £56,780-£91,980 £63,260-£102,660 £69,740-£113,340 £76,220-£124,020 £82,700-£134,700 £89,180-£145,380 £95,660-£156,060 £102,140-£166,740 £108,620-£177,420 £115,100-£188,100 £121,580-£198,780 £128,060-£209,460 £134,540-£220,140
101-150 £13,980-£20,820 £20,460-£31,500 £26,940-£42,180 £33,420-£52,860 £39,900-£63,540 £46,380-£74,220 £52,860-£84,900 £59,340-£95,580 £65,820-£106,260 £72,300-£116,940 £78,780-£127,620 £85,260-£138,300 £91,740-£148,980 £98,220-£159,660 £104,700-£170,340 £111,180-£181,020 £117,660-£191,700 £124,140-£202,380 £130,620-£213,060 £137,100-£223,740
151-200 £16,520-£24,420 £23,000-£35,100 £29,480-£45,780 £35,960-£56,460 £42,440-£67,140 £48,920-£77,820 £55,400-£88,500 £61,880-£99,180 £68,360-£109,860 £74,840-£120,540 £81,320-£131,220 £87,800-£141,900 £94,280-£152,580 £100,760-£163,260 £107,240-£173,940 £113,720-£184,620 £120,200-£195,300 £126,680-£205,980 £133,160-£216,660 £139,640-£227,340
201-250 £19,080-£28,020 £25,560-£38,700 £32,040-£49,380 £38,520-£60,060 £45,000-£70,740 £51,480-£81,420 £57,960-£92,100 £64,440-£102,780 £70,920-£113,460 £77,400-£124,140 £83,880-£134,820 £90,360-£145,500 £96,840-£156,180 £103,320-£166,860 £109,800-£177,540 £116,280-£188,220 £122,760-£198,900 £129,240-£209,580 £135,720-£220,260 £142,200-£230,940
251-300 £21,620-£31,620 £28,100-£42,300 £34,580-£52,980 £41,060-£63,660 £47,540-£74,340 £54,020-£85,020 £60,500-£95,700 £66,980-£106,380 £73,460-£117,060 £79,940-£127,740 £86,420-£138,420 £92,900-£149,100 £99,380-£159,780 £105,860-£170,460 £112,340-£181,140 £118,820-£191,820 £125,300-£202,500 £131,780-£213,180 £138,260-£223,860 £144,740-£234,540
301-350 £24,180-£35,220 £30,660-£45,900 £37,140-£56,580 £43,620-£67,260 £50,100-£77,940 £56,580-£88,620 £63,060-£99,300 £69,540-£109,980 £76,020-£120,660 £82,500-£131,340 £88,980-£142,020 £95,460-£152,700 £101,940-£163,380 £108,420-£174,060 £114,900-£184,740 £121,380-£195,420 £127,860-£206,100 £134,340-£216,780 £140,820-£227,460 £147,300-£238,140
351-400 £26,720-£38,820 £33,200-£49,500 £39,680-£60,180 £46,160-£70,860 £52,640-£81,540 £59,120-£92,220 £65,600-£102,900 £72,080-£113,580 £78,560-£124,260 £85,040-£134,940 £91,520-£145,620 £98,000-£156,300 £104,480-£166,980 £110,960-£177,660 £117,440-£188,340 £123,920-£199,020 £130,400-£209,700 £136,880-£220,380 £143,360-£231,060 £149,840-£241,740
401-450 £29,280-£42,420 £35,760-£53,100 £42,240-£63,780 £48,720-£74,460 £55,200-£85,140 £61,680-£95,820 £68,160-£106,500 £74,640-£117,180 £81,120-£127,860 £87,600-£138,540 £94,080-£149,220 £100,560-£159,900 £107,040-£170,580 £113,520-£181,260 £120,000-£191,940 £126,480-£202,620 £132,960-£213,300 £139,440-£223,980 £145,920-£234,660 £152,400-£245,340
451-500 £31,820-£46,020 £38,300-£56,700 £44,780-£67,380 £51,260-£78,060 £57,740-£88,740 £64,220-£99,420 £70,700-£110,100 £77,180-£120,780 £83,660-£131,460 £90,140-£142,140 £96,620-£152,820 £103,100-£163,500 £109,580-£174,180 £116,060-£184,860 £122,540-£195,540 £129,020-£206,220 £135,500-£216,900 £141,980-£227,580 £148,460-£238,260 £154,940-£248,940
501-1,000 £45,860-£65,820 £52,340-£76,500 £58,820-£87,180 £65,300-£97,860 £71,780-£108,540 £73,580-£114,540 £75,380-£120,540 £77,180-£126,540 £78,980-£132,540 £80,780-£138,540 £82,580-£144,540 £84,380-£150,540 £86,180-£156,540 £87,980-£162,540 £89,780-£168,540 £91,580-£174,540 £93,380-£180,540 £95,180-£186,540 £96,980-£192,540 £98,780-£198,540
1,001-1,500 £71,360-£101,820 £77,840-£112,500 £84,320-£123,180 £90,800-£133,860 £97,280-£144,540 £99,080-£150,540 £100,880-£156,540 £102,680-£162,540 £104,480-£168,540 £106,280-£174,540 £108,080-£180,540 £109,880-£186,540 £111,680-£192,540 £113,480-£198,540 £115,280-£204,540 £117,080-£210,540 £118,880-£216,540 £120,680-£222,540 £122,480-£228,540 £124,280-£234,540
1,501-2,000 £96,860-£137,820 £103,340-£148,500 £109,820-£159,180 £116,300-£169,860 £122,780-£180,540 £124,580-£186,540 £126,380-£192,540 £128,180-£198,540 £129,980-£204,540 £131,780-£210,540 £133,580-£216,540 £135,380-£222,540 £137,180-£228,540 £138,980-£234,540 £140,780-£240,540 £142,580-£246,540 £144,380-£252,540 £146,180-£258,540 £147,980-£264,540 £149,780-£270,540
2,001-2,500 £122,360-£173,820 £128,840-£184,500 £135,320-£195,180 £141,800-£205,860 £148,280-£216,540 £150,080-£222,540 £151,880-£228,540 £153,680-£234,540 £155,480-£240,540 £157,280-£246,540 £159,080-£252,540 £160,880-£258,540 £162,680-£264,540 £164,480-£270,540 £166,280-£276,540 £168,080-£282,540 £169,880-£288,540 £171,680-£294,540 £173,480-£300,540 £175,280-£306,540
2,501-3,000 £147,860-£209,820 £154,340-£220,500 £160,820-£231,180 £167,300-£241,860 £173,780-£252,540 £175,580-£258,540 £177,380-£264,540 £179,180-£270,540 £180,980-£276,540 £182,780-£282,540 £184,580-£288,540 £186,380-£294,540 £188,180-£300,540 £189,980-£306,540 £191,780-£312,540 £193,580-£318,540 £195,380-£324,540 £197,180-£330,540 £198,980-£336,540 £200,780-£342,540
3,001-3,500 £173,360-£245,820 £179,840-£256,500 £186,320-£267,180 £192,800-£277,860 £199,280-£288,540 £201,080-£294,540 £202,880-£300,540 £204,680-£306,540 £206,480-£312,540 £208,280-£318,540 £210,080-£324,540 £211,880-£330,540 £213,680-£336,540 £215,480-£342,540 £217,280-£348,540 £219,080-£354,540 £220,880-£360,540 £222,680-£366,540 £224,480-£372,540 £226,280-£378,540
3,501-4,000 £198,860-£281,820 £205,340-£292,500 £211,820-£303,180 £218,300-£313,860 £224,780-£324,540 £226,580-£330,540 £228,380-£336,540 £230,180-£342,540 £231,980-£348,540 £233,780-£354,540 £235,580-£360,540 £237,380-£366,540 £239,180-£372,540 £240,980-£378,540 £242,780-£384,540 £244,580-£390,540 £246,380-£396,540 £248,180-£402,540 £249,980-£408,540 £251,780-£414,540
4,001-4,500 £224,360-£317,820 £230,840-£328,500 £237,320-£339,180 £243,800-£349,860 £250,280-£360,540 £252,080-£366,540 £253,880-£372,540 £255,680-£378,540 £257,480-£384,540 £259,280-£390,540 £261,080-£396,540 £262,880-£402,540 £264,680-£408,540 £266,480-£414,540 £268,280-£420,540 £270,080-£426,540 £271,880-£432,540 £273,680-£438,540 £275,480-£444,540 £277,280-£450,540
4,501-5,000 £249,860-£353,820 £256,340-£364,500 £262,820-£375,180 £269,300-£385,860 £275,780-£396,540 £277,580-£402,540 £279,380-£408,540 £281,180-£414,540 £282,980-£420,540 £284,780-£426,540 £286,580-£432,540 £288,380-£438,540 £290,180-£444,540 £291,980-£450,540 £293,780-£456,540 £295,580-£462,540 £297,380-£468,540 £299,180-£474,540 £300,980-£480,540 £302,780-£486,540

1 Note that this doesn't represent all of the data on historical cases; in order to try to provide a "like-for-like" comparison it is restricted to cases where there was a single client and the matter was tried in the crown court. This will give you a general idea but obviously Jim will be able to advise you on the specifics of your particular case and the impact this may have on the likely cost.

2 This is an approximation. There are calculators available on the MOJ\'s website which will help you work out the fee claimable under the scheme, exluding any additional payment made for "special preparation".

Case law relevant to allegations of affray

[rb_output_case_precedents tag-ids=’886′]

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