Mr David Walbank QC > Red Lion Chambers > London, England > Lawyer Profile

Red Lion Chambers
Red Lion Chambers


Having historically had conduct of many of the most serious and sensitive cases for the major fraud prosecution agencies (including as former Standing Counsel to the Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office and to the Department for Business Innovation and Skills), David’s work is now almost exclusively for front-rank defence firms.

After studying law at Cambridge University, where he was President of the Cambridge Union Society, David was called to the Bar in 1987. In his early years in practice he was in the chambers of George Carman QC and his work was predominantly in the civil jurisdiction with regular appearances in the High Court. Since the mid-1990s, however, he has specialised in heavyweight crime and is instructed in many of the most high-profile cases in the fields of: Serious Complex Fraud; Serious Crime; Organised Crime; Bribery and Corruption; Money Laundering, Confiscation and Restraint; Regulatory Offences; Civil Fraud.

David is an outstanding technical lawyer and prolific speaker on issues of interest to criminal and regulatory practitioners. He is the main presenter on the criminal law video updates website ‘CrimeCast.Law’.

His legal knowledge is matched by his natural ability as an advocate. Notable recent instructions have included the successful defence of the main defendant in a 3-month corruption trial prosecuted by the Serious Fraud Office (reported as ‘Big Oil on Trial’) and representing one of the principal defendants in a 9-month trial, Operation Amazon, which is one of the largest and most complex tax prosecutions ever to have come before the courts.


David’s expertise in fraud, bribery and corruption, organised crime, the proceeds of crime and regulatory proceedings is founded on his many years of acting for all of the main fraud prosecution agencies in some of the highest profile trials to come before the courts. His abilities and experience have been recognised by his appointment, following open competitions, to a number of the most demanding positions in these fields of practice. In 2005 he was appointed Standing Counsel to the Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office (RCPO). Upon the lapse of that post in 2012, following RCPO’s incorporation into the CPS, he was immediately appointed as Standing Counsel to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. In the last CPS grading exercise, he was appointed as a Grade 4 advocate (expressly reserved for ‘advocates of exceptional experience and ability’) and, before turning to full-time defence practice, he regularly prosecuted for the CPS Central Fraud Group and the Complex Casework Units. David is on the SFO’s List A. He is also on the Regulatory List A of Advocates for the Health & Safety Executive, Office of Rail Regulation and Environment Agency. Memberships held: Criminal Bar Association, South Eastern Circuit, Fraud Lawyers Association, Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers. Publications of note: David frequently lectures and writes on topics of particular interest to lawyers specialising in fraud, bribery and corruption, organised crime, money-laundering and regulatory offences. Recent events and publications have included the following. • In 2013 he delivered the keynote lecture on ‘Recent Developments in Evidence, Procedure and the Substantive Law’ to the Annual Government Legal Service Prosecutors’ Conference – speaking alongside the Solicitor-General and the Director of the Serious Fraud Office – and, having been invited to do so again in 2014, his legal developments lecture has now become a regular fixture • A series of seminars conducted alongside Professor David Ormerod QC on the Fraud Act 2006 • Talks to the Professional Negligence Lawyers’ Association and to investigators within some of the leading accountancy firms in relation to the developing private prosecution jurisdiction • A series of lectures to leading white collar defence firms including talks entitled ‘Chinks In The Draconian Armour’ and ‘Breaking The Shackles’ (on the conduct of respectively confiscation and restraint proceedings specifically from the perspective of the defence solicitor) • David has also been a regular lecturer to RCPO lawyers, HMRC investigators, the Enforcement Division of the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency and to the Metropolitan Police Fraud Squad (on the law relating to search warrants and Legal Professional Privilege). • He wrote the chapter on ‘Prosecution Disclosure’ in Butterworths’ ‘Fraud: Law, Practice and Procedure’.


Fraud Lawyers Association;

Association of Regulatory & Disciplinary Lawyers;

Health and Safety Lawyers’ Association (HSLA);

Criminal Bar Association;

South Eastern Circuit.


Aylesbury Grammar School
Queens’ College, Cambridge, MA Hons in Law

Lawyer Rankings

London Bar > Fraud: crime

(Leading Silks) Ranked: Tier 4

David Walbank QCRed Lion ChambersIn court he is utterly dogged, and will pursue any point he feels will assist his case, especially in cross-examination. He takes no prisoners and, if you are in a case against him, prepare to be battered, bruised and charmed by the end of it.