Sally O'Neill QC > Chambers of Oliver Blunt QC & Sally O'Neill QC > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Oliver Blunt QC & Sally O'Neill QC
Furnival Chambers
Sally O'Neill photo


Sally O’Neill QC has been consistently ranked as a leading Silk in crime in Chambers & Partners

The editors of the 2017 edition acclaim her as:

“An experienced practitioner who is highly acclaimed for her courtroom performances. An ‘astute advocate’, she is particularly well known for her mastery of serious sexual offence and infanticide cases, most notably those involving ‘baby shaking’. Her handling of the potentially vulnerable witnesses involved in such cases was much commented upon. She also excels in serious and complex murder and manslaughter cases, among others.  She’s very polished. Juries tend to like and trust her, because she has a direct way of communication with them which appeals to them. She’s a really formidable and fair opponent.”

And in 2015 she was acclaimed for: “appearing in complex and sensitive matters, including baby shaking cases and serious sexual and violent crime cases.”

She was the Chairman of the Criminal Bar Association from 2007 to 2008. She was The Times’ Lawyer of the Week on May 13th 2009.

Sally has been practising exclusively in Crime for the last 25 years, mostly at the Old Bailey, and took Silk in 1997.

Since taking Silk she has predominantly undertaken defence work, although she prosecuted in the “Baby P” case and a serious sexual allegation involving a complainant then aged four. She has recently prosecuted two multi-handed murders, one involving a car-jacking and the latest one involving the murder and later dismemberment and disposal of the body. She has considerable expertise in murder, manslaughter and serious sexual cases, especially child abuse and trials involving young defendants. She was also involved in the Oxford sexual grooming case.

Her extensive experience also includes the case of Whiting, which concerned the abduction and murder of Sarah Payne and representing Ian Watkins (Lostprophets) on very serious sexual abuse of extremely young children. Sally also represented Jake Farhi (the Jimmy Mizen case) and is currently representing a mother who stabbed to death a man accused of sexually assaulting three children.


Called 1976; Silk 1997; recorder of the Crown Court since 1997; bencher of Gray’s Inn since 2003.


German, French.


Member: Chairman of CBA 2007-08; member of joint CBA/NSPCC working group which produced ‘A Case for Special Measures’ DVD as a training material; member of ATC working group which has recently published a report ‘Raising the Bar ; Improving handling of vulnerable witnesses and defendants in court’; member of current CBA/NSPCC working group producing a new DVD containing working materials re the above.

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Crime

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 4

Sally O’Neill QCFurnival ChambersShe commands respect from all in her presence. Very approachable, she can handle the most difficult client. Her legal submissions are flawless, when she speaks you stop and you listen. She takes every point and argued on behalf of her client. A remarkable lawyer.