Jonathan Rees QC > Chambers of Jonathan Laidlaw QC > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Chambers of Jonathan Laidlaw QC
2 Hare Court


Over the last 20 years, Jonathan has developed a substantial criminal practice, predominantly at the Old Bailey, appearing in many cases that have attracted national media attention. In this environment, he has developed an enviable reputation for his courtroom manner and his ability to communicate effectively with judges and juries alike. Since relinquishing his appointment as senior treasury counsel at the end of 2015, Jonathan has concentrated on using his experience of serious and complex cases to develop his criminal defence practice, and has already defended in a number of murder cases including a case arising from the first ever cold-case murder review conducted in the Cayman Islands. With an academic background in science, he has particular expertise in cases involving DNA evidence and edits a chapter devoted to this topic in the leading textbook on sexual offences.

Notwithstanding his focus on defence work, Jonathan continues to be sought after to prosecute the most serious and sensitive cases. In recent months he has prosecuted the first optometrist ever to be charged with gross negligence manslaughter, the ‘Grindr’ serial killer Stephen Port, the entertainer Rolf Harris and Damon Smith, the student who planted a home-made IED on the London Underground. Additionally, Jonathan receives instructions from the Serious Fraud Office and has experience of appearing at inquests on behalf of the family of the deceased.

Jonathan is currently one of a panel of three experts involved in providing advice to member of China’s Supreme People’s Court on the reform of their People’s Assessors System. Jonathan is committed to ethnic minority achievement and has recently been appointed as a governor of a large secondary school in Southall, West London.


Year of Call: 1987

Treasury Counsel: 2002 – 2015

Appointed Queen’s Counsel: 2012

Former member of the Remuneration Committee of the Bar Council


  • 2008-2015: Senior Treasury Counsel
  • South Eastern Circuit
  • Criminal Bar Association


Cardiff High School, Stowe and Jesus College, Oxford

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Crime

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 1

Jonathan Rees QC2 Hare CourtThere are few to match Jonny Rees QC: he works incredibly hard, and has great judgement. Being led by him is being like chauffeur driven in a Bentley. A charming jury advocate.