Brian Altman KC > Chambers of Brian Altman KC & Jim Sturman KC > London, England > Barrister Profile

Chambers of Brian Altman KC & Jim Sturman KC
2 Bedford Row


Brian advises prominent national and multinational corporations at board level in such fields as bribery, corruption, fraud and money laundering, as well as corporate governance, compliance and regulation and other esoteric areas. His practice typically involves advice to business where there is a crossover between the commercial world and the suspicion of criminal wrongdoing. Additionally, he advises and represents high-net-worth individuals and other private clients on a variety of issues, such as phone hacking and unlawfulness by public authorities. His clientele includes the UK government, household name corporations and private individuals, and it has also included a Middle Eastern Royal family.
Brian also prosecutes and defends in cases of serious crime, such as homicide, terrorism, money laundering and drugs. The SFO, CMA and FCA have also instructed him, respectively, in blockbuster cases, nationwide cartel and insider dealing investigations.
Brian was Treasury Counsel at the Old Bailey for 16 years, two and a half years of which were served as First Senior Treasury Counsel, a role which saw him advise in and prosecute some of the most high-profile cases of the day, such as the abduction and murder of Milly Dowler, the Birmingham suicide bomb plot, and the 1982 Hyde Park bombing. He has appeared in appeal courts up to and including the Supreme Court.
In January 2017 Brian was appointed Lead Counsel to the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse, and led as Counsel to the Inquiry in the Rochdale and Cyril Smith investigation hearings in October 2017 and advises in all aspects of the Inquiry. He is also due to lead in the Westminster investigation hearings in March 2019.
The role has not affected his exisiting caseload or other professional commitments and he has remained and continues to remain able to accept new instructions.
Brian has appeared in the legal directories as a leader in the field for many years, and has been nominated in the past for crime junior and crime silk of the year; and was ‘highly commended’ by The Legal 500 In 2013.
Brian is regularly asked to comment for the BBC and other news agencies, by documentary makers to appear on TV programmes and to speak at educational and other events.
For further information go to and and/or speak to John Grimmer or Paul Rodgers on 020 7440 8888


Called 1981; Middle Temple; junior Treasury counsel, Central Criminal Court 1997; senior Treasury counsel, Central Criminal Court 2002; recorder 2003; QC 2008; bencher of Middle Temple 2010; first senior Treasury counsel, Central Criminal Court 2010-13; chairman Central Criminal Court Bar, Mess 2010-13.




Chingford Senior High School; King’s College, London (LLB); University of Amsterdam (Dip Eur Int).

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Business and regulatory crime (including global investigations)

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 2

Brian Altman KC2 Bedford RowBrian is a colossus of the Bar. One of the best of his generation. His advocacy is pitched perfectly, and he combines gravitas and legal mastery with the common touch. There are few that equal his ability and skill.

2 Bedford Row is an ‘outstanding set‘ for white collar and business crime, whose members represent both corporate and individual clients, as well as both private and public prosecutors, in criminal and regulatory investigations. Brian Altman KC was appointed by the Attorney General and the Serious Fraud Office to lead a high-profile investigation into the collapse of the Serious Fraud Office’s SERCO trial in April 2021 – in addition, he and Simon Baker KC continue to represent the Post Office in criminal appeals in the wake of the Horizon scandal. Thomas Daniel prosecuted a Gambian diplomat for withholding information from The Pensions Regulator, the defendant in this case having raised diplomatic immunity arguments and sought to justify his absence from the trial by claiming he was persona non grata in the United Kingdom. Mark Milliken-Smith KC, as was, was appointed as a Circuit Judge in December 2023.

London Bar > Crime

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Brian Altman KC – 2 Bedford Row ‘Brian is a colossus of the Bar who deservedly commands the respect of the judiciary, opponents, clients and all of his team. His advocacy is pitched perfectly, and he combines gravitas and legal mastery with a common touch. He is a brilliant tactician and clients, lay and professional, love him. Simply one of the best.’ 

London Bar > Inquests and inquiries

(Leading Silks)Ranked: Tier 1

Brian Altman KC2 Bedford Row ‘Brian is the heavyweight champion of the inquiry world. A brilliant operator.’