Firm Profile > Olliers > Manchester, England

M3 4NF

Crime: fraud Tier 1

Specialist crime firm Olliers is recommended for its defence of serious fraud allegations including investment fraud and pension fraud. Practice head Matthew James Claughton specialises in defending allegations of serious fraud, in regulatory matters, and often acts for clients during the investigation stage of the criminal process. Also noted is Matthew Corn, who deals with NCA and HMRC investigations, and with proceeds of crime confiscation matters. Mike Garstang, who has considerable experience working on money laundering offences, joined the team from Cartwright King.

Crime: general Tier 1

Olliers handles serious crime cases including drugs and firearms importation conspiracies, terrorism, historic sexual offences and manslaughter by gross negligence. Matthew Claughton heads the practice. The team defends prosecutions and investigations brought by bodies including the NCA and the Serious Organised Crime Agency. Alex Preston specialises in serious crime and inquests, and has developed a practice representing autistic clients. Mike Garstang joined from Garstangs Cartwright King LLP; he has more than 40 years' experience in dealing with serious and general crime.

Practice head(s):


‘Alex Preston is an exceptionally good criminal solicitor. Her broad range of expertise and experience and her outstanding client handling make her a natural choice for any defendant.’

‘Olliers are outstanding in a number of respects: (a) strength in depth – a number of very experienced fraud and general crime specialists; (b) an ethos of commitment to the client’s cause (including very often pro bono work); (c) excellent leadership.’

Olliers is firmly established as one of the UK’s leading criminal defence and regulatory law firms. We are based in Manchester with facilities in London and our client base is nationwide. Areas of specialism involve the defence of corporate and financial crime, regulatory offences, serious crime, sexual offences, asset recovery, insolvency disputes, motor offences, inquests and appeals.

We have a particularly strong reputation in the field of ‘crisis management’, frequently receiving instructions during the very early stages of a case, often before an interview has taken place. We understand the stress and anxiety an investigation can cause an individual or a business. We are known for our proactive approach, establishing early dialogue with investigators, keeping publicity and disruption to a minimum whilst looking to bring any investigation to a swift conclusion.

We are four times winners of the Manchester Legal Awards Crime Team of the Year. We are ranked as a Top Tier Crime/Fraud firm in the current editions of the Legal 500 and the Chambers Guide. Our Managing Director Matthew Claughton has in excess of thirty years experience and is regularly singled out for mention by the Legal 500 and the Chambers.

Criminal defence/regulatory practice areas: We have 14 qualified and highly skilled solicitors working across the sectors below:

Fraud and business crime: We handle a wide range of large scale, complex and often high profile fraud cases. Our team is experienced in dealing with cases prosecuted by the Serious Fraud Office, HMRC investigations, specialist fraud divisions of the police, and the Financial Conduct Authority. Key contact; Matthew Claughton

Regulatory offences: The firm’s regulatory team represents clients in the following regulatory areas; trading standards, food safety and hygiene, trade marks, fire safety, copyright and design breaches, health and safety, environmental damage and, transport law. Key contact; Matthew Claughton

Insolvency disputes: Our insolvency dispute team deals with all matters that may arise from insolvency, including illegal dividends, wrongful and fraudulent trading, preferences, transactions at undervalue, misfeasance claims, bankruptcy annulments, reuse of company following insolvency and validation orders. Key contact; Stephen Chinnery

Serious crime: Olliers’ reputation for committed and rigorous defence work means that we attract an enviable volume of heavyweight criminal work. The serious crime specialists have experience in the full range of criminal cases including gangland murders, multi-handed drugs conspiracies, firearms offences, terrorism allegations, people smuggling and a wide range of cases involving undercover operations. The serious crime team has considerable experience of dealing with prosecutions brought by agencies such as the CPS Complex Crime Unit and the National Crime Agency. Key contact; Matt Corn

Extradition: We act for individuals abroad facing extradition to the United Kingdom and provide representation for those currently in the UK facing extradition to another country. Key contact; Sharmila Salvi

Internet and cyber crime: Our internet and cyber crime team defends allegations relating to the dark web, distribution of pirated and copyrighted material, hacking and cyber terrorism, identity theft and phishing scams, cyber stalking, revenge porn and indecent images. Key contact; Toby Wilbraham.

Sexual offences: Matthew Claughton heads the team dealing with serious sexual offences and has had notable success during recent years with a particular emphasis on historic rape and sexual assault allegations. Matthew has developed an enviable reputation in proactively defending sexual allegations whilst at the investigative stage. His team also deals with allegations involving sexual communication, grooming and images.

Asset recovery: Seven solicitors have expertise in this area, which covers restraint, cash seizures, money laundering and proceeds of crime. Olliers specialists can assist from the point of restraint proceedings prior to charge through to post conviction POCA proceedings. The firm has been instructed in confiscation proceedings with alleged benefit figures running to tens of millions of pounds, with some excellent results. Key contact; Matt Corn

Motoring offences: We have a thriving motoring department. The team specialises in defending allegations of driving with excess alcohol and drug driving with a particular emphasis on technical and procedural irregularities. They also represent those facing the loss of their driving licence as a result of dangerous driving, careless driving, speeding allegations and regularly appear in courts nationwide with applications for exceptional hardship, early return of licence and appeals against DVLA revocation of licence. Key contact; Ruth Peters.

Department Name Email Telephone
Managing Director Matthew Claughton 0161 827 7010
Head of Magistrates' Department David Philpott 0161 834 1515
Serious Crime Matthew Corn 0161 834 1515
Motoring Department Ruth Peters 0161 834 1515
Serious Crime Alex Preston 0161 834 1515
Crown Court Department Stacey Mabrouk 0161 834 1515
Serious Crime Zita Spencer 0161 834 1515
Photo Name Position Profile
 David Abbott  photo David Abbott Has represented clients on a full range of cases from murder, serious…
Mrs Laura Baumanis  photo Mrs Laura Baumanis Solicitor
Miss Helen Buxton  photo Miss Helen Buxton Helen Buxton joined Olliers Solicitors in 2008 having arrived from JMW solicitors.…
 Matthew James Claughton  photo Matthew James Claughton Olliers’ Managing Director Matthew Claughton is widely regarded as having steered the…
Mr Alex Close-Claughton  photo Mr Alex Close-Claughton Apprentice Solicitor
Mr Matthew Corn  photo Mr Matthew Corn Solicitor Matthew Corn qualified as a barrister in 1995. He transferred to…
Miss Lily Grundy  photo Miss Lily Grundy Lily joined Olliers as a trainee solicitor in September 2019. Lily previously…
Mrs Stacey Mabrouk  photo Mrs Stacey Mabrouk Solicitor Stacey Mabrouk joined Olliers in 2003 and qualified as a solicitor…
Mrs Jane Novas-Morell  photo Mrs Jane Novas-Morell Experienced solicitor and higher court advocate who qualified in 1996. Undertakes police…
Mrs Ruth Peters  photo Mrs Ruth Peters Solicitor Ruth Peters joined Olliers Solicitors in 2005, qualifying as a solicitor…
 David Philpott  photo David Philpott David was admitted as a solicitor in January 1992 and has specialised…
Ms Alex Preston  photo Ms Alex Preston Alex is a solicitor advocate specialising in serious crime and inquests. She has…
Mr Max Saffman  photo Mr Max Saffman Responsible for preparation of cases and presenting them at Crown Court. Advising…
Mr Toby Wilbraham  photo Mr Toby Wilbraham Toby is a highly experienced solicitor having been at Olliers for in excess of 20…
Number of UK partners : 1
Number of other UK fee-earners : 20