James has a broad practice spanning commercial litigation and arbitration, banking and financial services, civil fraud, energy, regulatory & professional disciplinary law, aviation, procurement, and judicial review.
He regularly acts as sole counsel in trials and applications in the High Court, county courts and disciplinary tribunals, and has also appeared as sole advocate in the Court of Appeal. Internationally, James has experience of litigation and arbitration in the BVI, Singapore, Malaysia and a number of Middle East jurisdictions.
James is a contributing editor to Phipson on Evidence, Jordan’s Regulatory and Disciplinary Proceedings, and Butterworths Financial Regulation Service.
James undertakes a wide range of banking and financial services work, both contentious and non-contentious. He is an editor of the Financial Services volume of Atkin’s Court Forms (2014) and a contributor to Butterworths Financial Regulation Service (on EU financial services law) and the Journal of International Banking and Financial Law.
James has been instructed in a number of prominent financial services cases including:
James regularly advises on complaints and challenges to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS), and has acted for the FOS in a number of judicial reviews. He also has experience of investigations and prosecutions brought by the Serious Fraud Office, having appeared in SFO v Evans  EWHC 3803 (Celtic Energy prosecution, led by Michael Beloff QC and Gabriel Moss QC).
In non-contentious work, James regularly advises on all aspects of FSMA regulation, capital adequacy, client money, takeovers and mergers, securities and derivatives, loan agreements, bond issues, guarantees, performance bonds, charges, letters of credit and consumer credit. He recently advised on a major bond issue by a social housing provider and on increased costs claims by a building society. He has a particular interest in Islamic Finance, and has advised in relation to Sharia law in commercial disputes connected with various Gulf States.
James’s commercial practice includes commercial litigation and arbitration, banking and financial services, fraud, energy, professional negligence, intellectual property, applications under the Insolvency Act 1986 and Companies Act 2006, and applications for disclosure and interim relief such as freezing, delivery up and search orders.
Much of James’s work is international, particularly in the Middle East and Far East. This has included arbitrations under DIFC, LCIA, ICC and GCC Commercial Arbitration Centre rules. He has particular experience in conflicts of laws and jurisdictional disputes. In 2014 he spent 3 months on secondment to the litigation and arbitration department of an English law firm in Dubai.
Current and recent work includes:
James regularly advises on money laundering issues, most recently in relation to major casinos and during the sale of a £60m hotel. He has significant experience in relation to issues of disclosure and legal professional privilege, including advising on LPP during the Coulson/Brooks phone-hacking trial.
James regularly acts for regulatory and professional bodies, individuals and firms on all aspects of professional and commercial regulation. He has particular experience in relation to financial services professionals, legal professionals, accountants and insolvency practitioners. He also advises on regulation of the gaming industry under the Gambling Act 2005. He is a contributor to the 8th edition of Jordan’s Regulatory and Disciplinary Proceedings (2015).
James practises in all areas of financial services regulation, including advising firms on compliance, anti money laundering and investigations. He has acted in major regulatory cases including in relation to LIBOR and Interest Rate Hedging Products. He recently acted in Roberts v FCA  UKUT 0408 (TCC) (concerning the collapse of Catalyst Investments). He acted for a firm subject to disciplinary proceedings by the London Stock Exchange. He has also acted in a judicial review of the Guernsey Financial Services Commission concerning disciplinary action against directors of a Guernsey firm. See the Banking & Financial Services section of his profile.
James has acted for the Law Society/SRA on a number of applications for disclosure and for delivery up and search orders against firms subject to intervention, as well as appearing for solicitors before the Solicitors Disciplinary Tribunal (SDT) and in appeals to the High Court. He is also instructed by solicitors’ firms on compliance and money laundering issues.
Recent cases include:
James was a Clerk to the Bar Disciplinary Tribunal (2014-17).
James regularly advises on matters relating to accountants and insolvency practitioners, including members of ICAEW, ACCA, CIMA and CIPFA. He acts for accountants and IPs subject to investigations and disciplinary proceedings, including appearing before ICAEW’s Disciplinary and Review Committees. He has advised regulators on issues such as appearance of bias, money laundering requirements, and tax avoidance schemes.
James has experience of regulation under the Gambling Act 2005 and the Gambling Commission’s Licence Conditions and Codes of Practice, including issues such as money laundering, payments, and social responsibility.
James has acted in judicial reviews including:
James has particular experience of election law, including acting in election petitions. He has acted for local authorities, candidates, election petitioners, and the Electoral Commission, and regularly advises on issues such as registration of political parties, election expenses, donations and party funding. Current and recent work includes:
James regularly acts in international arbitrations as sole or junior counsel, and has experience of arbitrations under DIFC, LCIA, ICC and GCC Commercial Arbitration Centre rules. Current and recent work includes:
James has acted in aviation-related judicial reviews, commercial claims for and against airlines, and in claims under EU law and the Montreal Convention. He has good knowledge of ICAO, EASA and CAA regulation, as well as aircraft financing issues.
Recent work includes:
James has acted in disputes in a number of energy sectors, including oil & gas, coal and renewables. Current and recent work includes: