Peter Caldwell


Peter Caldwell practices in complex criminal, extradition and regulatory law. He has a strong reputation in serious fraud and regulatory compliance and advises across the field of business risk, particularly Business and Human Rights and Responsible Business Conduct. Peter is ranked by Chambers UK in band 1 as a leading extradition barrister and a leading fraud barrister. He has represented requested persons and foreign governments in landmark cases which have shaped the law of extradition. He also regularly advises on mutual legal assistance requests. He is a natural choice for cases with an international dimension. Peter also represents businesses and regulators in health and safety, food safety and consumer cases and defends professionals in disciplinary proceedings before their regulatory bodies.

Chambers & Partners recommends Peter as a leading practitioner in fraud and extradition:

"He's experienced, very technical and highly knowledgeable." "A really good and calm advocate whose opinions carry weight with the judges." Chambers UK 2017

"Instructed for the defence in major SFO cases. He regularly tackles matters involving allegations of bribery and market manipulation, and is an expert on sanctions work … highlighted for his calm advocacy style and his ability to handle cases that hinge on human rights.” Chambers UK 2016

"He is unflappable in very difficult cases; he masters the evidence and papers. Someone the clients are always happy with as they feel that he's making their points for them well. A sensible and thoughtful advocate - handles very high-profile cases - cerebral - tactically good" Chambers UK 2015

"a well-regarded fraud junior who also acts as lead counsel in complex fraud trials." -"instructed as leading junior for both foreign governments and defendants" Chambers UK 2014

"brings a well-developed sense of strategy to cases" -"a really good but balanced advocate" Chambers UK 2013

"sources are particularly impressed with his knowledge of highly intricate legal concepts" -"a ritzy practice" Chambers UK 2012

"someone you can trust with matters of fiendish complexity" Chambers UK 2011

"has an amazing grasp of the cases he works on, and offers fantastic common sense and pragmatic advice” - Chambers UK 2010

Peter is also ranked by the Legal 500 as a 'leading individual'. The directory comments that he is "a reassuring and cerebral presence".

"An excellent advocate, who is great with clients".

"An intelligent, tactically astute and decisive advocate, who impresses with his ability to master complex arguments".

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Fraud & Financial Regulation

Peter is ranked as a leading barrister by both Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners for fraud and financial misconduct cases. He is one of only a few juniors ever to have acted as leading counsel for the defence in a Serious Fraud Office trial. He has been instructed in FSA/FCA cases and enforcement proceedings, BIS investigations and corporate internal investigations at the highest level. He appears on behalf of third parties to restraint and receivership proceedings and in post-confiscation enforcement proceedings. He also defends in civil recovery proceedings and tax assessment cases under Part 5 of PoCA.

Peter can advise businesses and individuals investigated in relation to financial misconduct at a very early stage, devising a strategy to avert the impact of regulatory or criminal proceedings and to manage the best response to litigation.

Recent instruction include:

Ongoing – advising company director on investigation of en primeur wine fraud.

Ongoing - representing a former solicitor in BIS investigation. 

Ongoing - representing professional charged with laundering the proceeds of a "copycat" website fraud. 

2015 - Secured acquittal of a solicitor charged with fraud on HMRC.

2015 - Represented defendant in QBD civil recovery proceedings brought by the National Crime Agency - advising in associated Tax Tribunal proceedings.

2015 - A – a woman of good character cleared of money laundering.  A, who had been charged as part of Operation Chitinous concerning the theft and laundering of over £400,000 from a payroll fraud was discharged following legal argument at the close of the prosecution case.

2015 - Operation Ninjask - Leading counsel in confiscation proceedings concerning sham marriages and immigration fraud.

2015 -  Secured acquittal of company director prosecuted for land banking fraud associated with Operation Cotton.

2014 - Practitioner accused of fraud on NHS found not guilty after challenges to statistician's evidence on "out of hours" working

2014 – Operation Truthful – pensions liberation fraud

Notable cases:

2013 - K - Acquittal of professional person accused of mortgage fraud surrounding the purchase of an Elizabethan manor house.

2010-2013 - SFO v W - Leading counsel for the defence in respect of alleged fraud on Allied Irish Banks Plc and Bank of Scotland. The case concerned a complex structure upon which AIB advanced £740 million. The related BOS matter concerns a €24m finance arrangement for a luxury "mega-yacht".

2012 - F - Leading counsel for the defence in respect of high value "phishing" fraud on HBOS.

2011 - FSA v W - Market abuse and mis-selling investment products.

2011 - J - Leading counsel for the defence on allegations of money laundering of proceeds of $15 million theft from Commerzbank, Frankfurt.

2011 - A- Leading counsel for the defence in respect of City of London Police investigation and prosecution of high profile boiler room fraud based in Spain and Sweden.

2010 - C- Mortgage fraud concerning high value country houses.

2010 - C - [2010] EWHC 136 Admin - application by receiver seeking declaration as to the true owner in equity of a property said to have been the subject of a sham transaction to avoid confiscation.

2010 - M - Leading counsel for defence in respect of allegations of bullion fraud.

2009 - N - Representing Chairman of private bank on allegations of laundering the proceeds of frauds on UK clearing banks.

2006-2009 - Re BAe Systems Plc - Advising senior executive of BAe in respect of SFO bribery investigation into Tanzanian radar contract.

2009 - Operation Isopope - Conspiracy to defraud the Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation of £229,000,000 -represented the bank's Security Supervisor in what has become known as the "keystroke" cyberheist.

2008 - Re S.O. Ltd - Representing company in forfeiture proceedings brought in respect of alleged proceeds of fraud. Money recovered with interest.

2008 - B - Leading counsel for the defence in conspiracy to defraud credit card companies.

2007-2008 - SFO v C - Defending the Deputy Managing Director of Independent Insurance Group Plc on allegations of conspiracy to defraud.

2006 - Operation Devout - Defence counsel in extensive MTIC fraud.

2004 - Dr J - Fraud on NHS by senior doctor.

2003 - Kanaris [2003] UKHL 2 - House of Lords guidance on preparatory hearings in serious and complex cases.

2002 - Re J [1992] EWCA Civ 562 - Leading counsel on the issue of self-incrimination in restraint proceedings.

2001 - C & others - Conspiracy to defraud the United Synagogue.

2000 - B - Representing accountant in fraud on finance houses and credit agencies.

2000 - DOD – Country-wide asset-stripping fraud.

1999 - B & others - Fraud concerning disposal of stolen Old Master paintings.

1999 - A & others - Cheating the Revenue - loss in excess of £12m.

Dispute Resolution

Peter is instructed in civil fraud and asset recovery actions and in intellectual property disputes concerning trade mark breach, copyright infringement and passing off. He also defends in civil recovery proceedings and tax assessment cases under PoCA. Recent instructions include acting on behalf of a corporate beneficial owner of art collection which was the subject of contested claims by state parties following fraud trial in Brazil. The claimant sought delivery up of works presently the subject of international tracing litigation and a mutual legal assistance request.


Peter is instructed in high profile cases for both requested persons and requesting governments. He has extensive knowledge of political and human rights conditions in former Eastern bloc countries, including Ukraine, Azerbaijan and the Russian Federation. In the past year he has acted for a series of persons whose extradition has been sought by Romania.  These culminated in the case of Rusu, in which Peter established serious breaches Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ill-treatment in detention) and demonstrated that the assurances given to the Courts by the Romanian authorities had been dishonoured. 

He has acted in highly complex and sensitive cases concerning Iraq, Brazil, Thailand, Peru, Colombia, Antigua, Paraguay, the Russian Federation and the UAE, as well as the USA and Commonwealth jurisdictions. Nearer to home, he acted on behalf of the Italian authorities in their request for Fabio Riva, defended a top London chef sought by Poland and has represents many requested persons in EAW cases. 

Current cases include:

USA v Lauri Love – Acting on behalf of the United States in their request for a UK national accused of hacking the computer systems of US Federal Agencies including the US Federal Reserve, the FBI and the US Army.

Thailand v McMillan - (ongoing) Request for extradition of the only Westerner ever to have escaped custody in Thailand.

Paraguay v Serra & Galino - (ongoing) First ever request by Paraguay for extradition.  

Notable cases include:

Celinski and other cases v Polish Judicial Authorities [2015] EWHC 1274 (Admin) – Leading guidance on approach to Article 8 cases on appeal.

H v USA [2015] EWHC 1066 (Admin) Divisional Court guidance on cases concerning lone parents

Volle v German IJA [2015] EWHC 1484 (Admin) Review of s.21A provisions

Elashmawy (& Riva) v Italian Judicial Authorities [2015] EWHC 28 (Admin) - Instructed as leading counsel on test case concerning the approach to be applied in EAW cases to Article 3 prison conditions. Status of pilot decisions of the ECtHR reviewed. Pending application to certify points of law to the Supreme Court.

Bagri v France [2014] EWHC 4066 (Admin) - Defending appellant in protracted proceedings on grounds of double jeopardy, forum and Article 8 proportionality.

Ali v German IJA [2014] EWHC 3881 (Admin) Challenge on whether decision to prosecute had been taken in the requesting state.

USA v Pham [2014] EWHC 4167 (Admin) - Leading counsel in first extradition request for membership and participation in the terrorism group Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

USA v Cheng [2014] EWHC 4091 (Admin) - Requested person sought on allegations of breaching US export controls on the supply of dual use components to the Iranian nuclear programme.

Dibden v French Judicial Authority [2014] EWHC 3074 (Admin) The first decision of the High Court on the new Forum bar.

India v Varley [2014] EWHC 3505 (Admin) - Request concerning historic sexual abuse at an orphanage in Goa.

Ukraine v P - Representing requested person sought by Ukraine on an allegation of murder. Discharged following argument that a grant of Humanitarian Protection should be considered to be equivalent to a grant of asylum.

Fuentes Villota v Spanish Judicial Authority [2014] EWHC 2623 (Admin) Decision on the admissibility of evidence derived from torture. Katrencik v Slovakian Judicial Authority [2014] EWHC 2062 (Admin) Article 3 (gross disproportionality of sentence).

Dunham & Dunham v United States of America [2014] EWHC 334(Admin) Article 8 (mental condition; prison conditions).

Da Silva v Brazil [2014] EWHC 1018(Admin) Article 3 (prison conditions).

Ukraine v ID - defending former Deputy Chairman of Rodovid Bank on allegations of fraud and misconduct in public office. The requested person was discharged on the grounds that prison conditions in Ukraine continue to violate Article 3 ECHR, and that he could not expect to have a fair trial by an independent judge.

Brodziak and others v IJAs of Poland - [2013] EWHC 3394 (Admin) Leading counsel on conjoined appeals on point of law concerning diaggregation of combined sentences in Poland; specialty. Ragul & Nadarajah v Azerbaijan - [2013] EWHC 2000 (Admin) Comprehensive review of issues relating to prison conditions, fair trial arrangements and mental health.

USA v Savage - [2012] EWHC 3317 (Admin) extradition sought for breach of US controls on import and export of military firearms and dual use components.

USA v Turner - [2012] EWHC (Admin) significant development in the law relating to suicide risk. Williams v IJA France [2012] EWHC 2128 (Admin) - forum, Article 8.

R. (on the application of Zaporozhchenko) v. Westminster Magistrates Court; R. (Redya) v. Same ([2011] EWHC 34) - computation of time for calculation of period within which SSHD must order extradition

Atkinson & Binnington v Supreme Court of Cyprus [2010] 1 W.L.R. 570 - The leading authority on the issue of convictions in absense and the meaning of "trial" under the 2003 Act.

USA v Friesel 2009 EWHC 1659 (Admin) - Leading counsel for USA in respect of the "New Square" conspiracies to defraud the US federal government.

Symeou v Court of Appeals, Patras, Greece [2009] 1 W.L.R. 2384 - Abuse of process; conduct of agencies of an issuing judicial authority distinguished from that of the judicial authority itself.

Fenyvesi 2009 EWHC 231 [2009] 4 All E.R. 324 - Leading authority on the admissibility of fresh evidence on appeal.

USA v Bow Street MCt (The Tollman Case) [2007] 1 W.L.R. 1157 - Leading authority on the court's jurisdiction of abuse of process and disclosure in extradition proceedings.

Fofana v Tribunal de Grande Instance de Meaux [2006] EWHC 744 (Admin) - Leading authority on application of the double jeopardy principle in extradition proceedings.

Hosseini v Issuing Judicial Authority, France [2006] EWHC 1333 (Admin) - Application of Eurojust

Guidelines on the issue of forum in criminal proceedings for trans-jurisdictional offences. 2005 - Russian Federation v Temerko - Leading counsel for Russian Federation in request for extradition of Mikhail Khodorkovsy's second-in-command for conspiracy to defraud the oil company Yukos.

Other appellate cases include:

Kepta v IJA Poland [2013] EWHC 3321 (Admin); Janik v IJA Poland [2013] EWHC 210 (Admin); Margiela v IJA Poland [2012] EWHC 1766 (Admin); Ammirato v IJA Italy 2012] EWHC 702 (Admin); Vatoci v Albania [2011] EWHC 1295 (Admin); Bader v IJA Hungary [2011] EWHC 436 (Admin); Beriro v IJA France [2010] EWHC 2071 (Admin); Finch v IJA France [2009] EWHC 1394 (Admin); Dziedzic v IJA Germany [2006] EWHC 1750 (Admin); Prenga v Albania [2006] EWHC 1616 (Admin); Colda v Romania [2006] EWHC 1150 (Admin); Zigmund v Slovakia [2005] EWHC 2507 (Admin); Sirvelis v Lithuania [2005] EWHC 2611 (Admin); Re Nikonovs [2005] EWHC 2405 (Admin); Parisiliti-Mollica v Deputy Public Prosecutor of Messina [2005] EWHC 3262 (Admin); R (on application of) Enander [2005] EWHC 3036 (Admin); Selbach v Lithuania [2005] EWHC 1536 (Admin); Osawe v Governor HMP Brixton & Anor [2003] EWHC 2140 (Admin) 

Criminal Law

Peter has over 20 years experience defending people accused of serious criminal offences.

2016 A - Not guilty verdict secured on trial of man accused of "stranger rape".

2016 T - Allegations of aggravated burglary dismissed following legal argument.

2015 I - Property developer discharged from proceedings for breaching planning regulations.

2014-15 C - As leading counsel for the defence, secured acquittal on allegations of supplying cocaine "on an industrial scale".

2013T - Defending landlord in planning enforcement proceedings.

2013 M - Defending director of scrap metal company on allegations of handling BT cable

2012 A - Leading counsel for the defence in confiscation proceedings with linked application for Serious Crime Prevention Order; submissions on Article 8 ECHR concerning undue restrictions on right to family life.

2012 - P - Securing discontinuance of rape prosecution

2011 S - Conspiracy to burgle the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge - Ancient chinese jade artifacts stolen valued at £20 million.

2011 - C - Secured discontinuance of rape prosecution.

2010 - F - Conspiracy to defraud UK Passport Agency.

2010 - D - Defending Senior Phlebotomist on allegations of defrauding the NHS.

2010 - P - Defending consultant paediatrician accused of child cruelty.

2009 - A - "Gang attack" murder of 14 year old boy.

2008 - A - Controlling child prostitution - defendant acquitted of trafficking children for sexual exploitation after 6 week trial.

2007 - M - Celebrity Chef cleared of perverting course of justice.

2007 - M - Abuse of process submission concerning lost evidence stops historic rape trial.

2007 - M (Operation Houdini) - Senior police officers suspended for suppression of evidence following acquittal of defendant on allegations of handling stolen diamonds.

2006 - G - (Operation Perigee) - Leading counsel for the defence in "club class crime" people trafficking case. 

2005 - SB - Defence of owner of premises in Food Safety prosecution.

2004 - M - Customs prosecution stopped following court’s rejection of lip reading evidence

2004 - Smith and others [2004] EWCA Crim 2212 - Principles in cases of Early and Villiers revisited: conviction quashed even where guilty plea and Newton Hearing.

2004 - L - murder of young boy by gang in racially motivated attack.

2004 - Donovan [2005] 1 Cr.App.R.(S.) - possession with intent to supply, sentence length 2000 - Y - Manslaughter and illegal trafficking of 58 Chinese immigrants.

1999 - W - "Snakehead" people trafficking trial at Central Criminal Court

Regulatory & Disciplinary Law

Health & Safety and consumer law

Peter advises businesses and regulators on health and safety, food safety and consumer law. His

caseload ranges from high profile criminal cases to confidential business advice:

In Riva (ILVA SpA) Peter acted on behalf of Italian judicial authorities in relation to health and safety breaches and industrial pollution by Europe’s largest steel producer.

Mitchells & Butlers Plc - fatal food-poisoning outbreak caused by the supply of contaminated turkey meat in a hotel on Christmas Day.

SB - Food safety prosecution of business with unsanitary and dangerous premises.

TI - defending planning enforcement actions in relation to dwellings subdivided into dangerous flats. Dunaways Ltd - prosecution of company for illegal dumping and breach of waste management controls.

D - representing Head of Security at Sumitomo Mitsui Bank in relation to security breaches.

C - An enquiry revealing substantial breaches of their duty of care towards the children resident there amounting to cruelty and neglect. The case raised complex issues of disclosure, PII and questions relating to the disclosure of 3rd party material.

Victoria Climbie - Assisting in preparation of the murder trial of Marie Therese Kouao, and later submissions to the public inquiry under Lord Laming. Disclosure relating to social services, four local authorities, the NHS and NHS - all of whom were criticised for failing to intervene.

YY - Concerning the death of 58 Chinese migrants who had been "transported" from mainland Europe to England in a container lorry without ventilation.

He has acted in high profile trading standards cases and planning enforcement actions. His IP experience provides a good fit for counterfeiting and trade mark breach prosecutions.

Professional Discipline

Peter has acted in disciplinary proceedings before a range of regulators, from the FA to the FSA. He is accredited to accept Public Access instructions 

Associations and memberships

  • Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House), 
  • Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers 
  • Administrative Law Bar Association 
  • Peter is a member of the Bar Pro Bono panel of advocates.