Geoff Whelan

Geoff Whelan

Year of call:

1996, Gray's Inn

Contact:

Geoff Whelan

Education:

LLB (Hons), Sheffield University

With over 20 years at the bar Geoff has developed a strong and busy criminal practice. He is regularly instructed in a wide range of serious criminal cases including murder, attempted murder, rape and other serious sexual offences, drugs conspiracies, allegations involving Organised Crime Groups and fraud. He is primarily instructed by the prosecution but also has a significant defence practice.

Geoff is a dedicated and tenacious advocate with a track record of thorough preparation and clear presentation in court. An all rounder he is good on cases that are both law and fact heavy. He has considerable experience of dealing sensitively with vulnerable witnesses building on his excellent 'bedside manner'. When prosecuting he keeps very good lines of communication open between the CPS and police throughout the lifetime of a case. Equally so when defending. He has prosecuted leading counsel in a number of cases both alone and with a junior.

Notable Cases

  • R v Adam Swellings [2008] All ER (D) 130 (Nov): Chester Crown Court and Court of Appeal, junior defence counsel, murder (of Garry Newlove).  Acted for the main defendant at trial and appeal against conviction on issues of bad character.
  • R v Natenale Lakew: Liverpool Crown Court, junior prosecution counsel, murder. Defendant initially unfit to plead in 2001 however returned to Court in 2015 for trial.
  •  R v Mohammad Zafar, Mohamad Iqbal & Mohammed Najum Iqbal: Minshull Street Crown Court, prosecution counsel, Modern Slavery conspiracy allegation.
  • R v Leon Ramsden: Manchester Crown Court, junior prosecution counsel, murder.
  • R v Gary Knox: Manchester Crown Court, junior prosecution counsel, murder.
  • R v Lee Smith: Manchester Crown Court, junior defence counsel, multi-handed £500M drugs importation.
  • R v Kelly Askew: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, possession of £½ million cocaine with intent to supply.
  • R v Darren Appleyard: Liverpool Crown Court, junior defence counsel, murder.
  • R v John Hardy: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, armed robbery. Obtained convictions on matters previously discontinued by the prosecution.
  • R v Ye Ho Han and Others: Preston Crown Court, prosecution counsel, cannabis farm drugs conspiracy. 
  • R v Matthew Phair: Liverpool Crown Court, defence counsel, death by dangerous driving. 
  • R v Jordan Clayton: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, death by dangerous driving. 
  • R v Halimo Ma'alin: Court of Appeal, defence counsel, passport offence. Successfully appealed conviction despite guilty plea on basis of erroneous legal advice.
  • R v Marlon Bills: Birmingham Crown Court, prosecution counsel, attempted murder.
  • R v Andrew Clewes: Stafford Crown Court, prosecution counsel, attempted murder
  • R v Michael Sierotko and Anthony Leonard: Operation Rowan, Manchester Crown Court, leading prosecution counsel, attempted murder, manufacturing a firearm, conspiracy to kidnap and conspiracy to blackmail. An attempted gang assassination using a home-made shotgun.
  • R v Philip Cartridge and Others: Operation Ardenne, Minshull Street Crown Court, prosecution counsel, s18, aggravated burglary, violent disorder. A 10 handed Stockport OCG violence case.
  • R v Jordan Baker and Others: Operation Maplin, Stafford Crown Court, prosecution counsel, conspiracy to supply heroin and crack cocaine. A 12 handed OCG county lines ‘cuckooing’ trial.
  • R v Lewis Hannan and Others: Operation Album (stage 1), Preston Crown Court, prosecution counsel, offending between rival OCG’s including s16A Firearms Act, arson and supply of cannabis.
  • R v Wajid Hussain and Others: Operation Album (stage 2), Preston Crown Court, prosecution counsel, conspiracy to commit violent disorder.
  • R v Dominic Leach and Others: Operation Cosmo, Manchester Crown Court, prosecution counsel, 6 handed conspiracy to commit criminal damage. An allegation against a graffiti gang of nationwide damage to rail property and rolling stock.
  • R v Bryan Gates: Stoke Crown Court, prosecution counsel, historic allegations of rape by a Methodist Minister of his wife and son (his wife was also a Methodist minister).
  • R v Gareth Jones: Chester Crown Court, defence counsel, causing death by dangerous driving. Death caused whilst racing at an unofficial ‘car meet’.
  • R v Adrian Hurley and Helen Hurley: Wolverhampton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, grave allegation of child cruelty. The defendants’ daughter was made to live in an outhouse for several months which lead to her developing trench foot, narrowly avoiding amputation.
  • R v Declan O’Donnell: Bolton Crown Court, defence counsel, gang rape allegation against players from Wigan Warriors rugby team. The prosecution offered no evidence before a retrial following serious disclosure failures.
  • R v James Glendenning: Manchester Crown Court, prosecution counsel, historic allegations of rape by an 88 year old ex-police officer on his daughters. 23 year sentence imposed following trial.
  • R v Peter Mord: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, historic allegations of rape by the head of a ‘Hells Angels’ Chapter.
  • R v Ronald Dale: Manchester Crown Court, prosecution counsel, allegation of rape where the defence was ‘sexsomnia’.
  • R v Stephen Whilde: Shrewsbury Crown Court, prosecution counsel, death by dangerous driving. Successfully referenced to the Court of Appeal.
  • R v Zane Ainscough: [2006] EWCA Crim 694, Court of Appeal, defence counsel. Appeal re disputed evidence of bad character.
  • R v Hana Kadir Rasoul: [2012] EWCA Crim 3080, Court of Appeal, defence counsel on appeal against conviction following guilty pleas to conspiracy and possessing a false passport.
  • R. v El Sadie: [2010] EWCA Crim 27, Court of Appeal, defence counsel on appeal against sentence for possessing false identity documents
  • R v Bernard Webbe [2001] EWCA Crim 1217: Court of Appeal, defence counsel, original guideline case on handling stolen goods.
  • R v B [2010] EWCA Crim 2353: Bolton Crown Court and Court of Appeal, prosecution counsel, rape. Successfully opposed appeal against conviction on issues of psychiatric reports and bad character.
  • R v Steven Strong: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, rape and sexual assault. Successfully prosecuted Leading Counsel in joined cases of rape and kidnapping, where one rape allegation had previously been discontinued.
  • R v Peter Tuffley: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, sexual assault and child abduction. Successfully prosecuted former Parliamentary Aide to a Home Office Minister for child grooming offences.
  • R v David Isaac: Liverpool Crown Court, defence counsel, rape. Successfully defended rape allegation made by the defendant's ex-partner.
  • R v Albert Liptrott: Liverpool Crown Court, defence counsel. Successfully defended rape allegation made by the defendant's ex-partner.
  • R v Anthony Courtnay: Derby Crown Court, defence counsel. Successfully defended rape allegation.
  • R v Stuart Whitehead: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, false imprisonment and male rape.
  • R v Keith Ceesay: Bolton Crown Court, prosecution counsel, historic sexual abuse.

Interests and Activities

External Tutor on the Additional Advocacy programme, Bar Professional Training Course, Manchester Metropolitan University 2013-2015.

Legal column in the Skeptic Magazine 2013-2017.

Chair of Greater Manchester Skeptics Society 2012-2017.

Director of North West Skeptical Events 2012-2018, organiser of QED, an annual convention covering science, reason and critical thinking.

Organiser of 'CSI Manchester' event held at Minshull Street Crown Court as part of the Manchester Science Festival 2017 (https://www.manchestersciencefestival.com/event/csi-manchester/).

Occasional newspaper reviewer for BBC Radio Manchester Breakfast Show 2014-2017.

Chair, Camden Labour Party, 1996-1999.

Chair, Inns of Court School of Law Labour Society 1994-1995.

Keen snowboarder, occasional hillwalker.

Specialist Areas of Practice:

Criminal

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