Jonathan is widely regarded as one of the best juniors at the Criminal Bar. He is the “go-to junior” for legally and factually complex cases such as those involving offences of terrorism, homicide, serious organised crime, complex fraud and cyber-crime.
He has been instructed in some of the most high-profile cases in the criminal courts, which include the recent prosecutions of John Worboys, the PC Harper trial and the trial concerning the manslaughter of 39 Vietnamese migrants. He brings to all cases his fierce intellect, unstinting hard work and dedication and an approachable and down-to-earth manner. He is much admired for his excellent and incisive judgment and legal knowledge as well as his ability to communicate complex evidence in a way that is clear and attractive to juries.
Jonathan is ranked as a leading junior in Chambers & Partners UK Bar Guide 2021 (Band 1) and the Legal 500.
He is Junior Treasury Counsel, based at the Central Criminal Court having been appointed by the Attorney-General in November 2017.
8 January 2021
Jonathan Polnay opens the prosecution case at the start of the sentencing... Read More
‘He is highly intelligent; he is prolifically hard-working and has endless stamina and he is a great strategist and his judgment is pretty perfect. He is one of the best junior Treasury Counsel at the Old Bailey. A masterful advocate; he makes winning look easy.’ Legal 500 2021
Has the ability to simplify complex prosecution cases that might be strong evidentially but are on paper difficult to communicate to a jury." "He is good with the jury and is also someone whose judgement you can trust.’ Chambers & Partners 2021
“He has extensive experience of how the criminal justice system operates in practice, particularly in relation to the processes used by law enforcement and the mechanics of the various powers available to law enforcement agencies. He has excellent judgement and is able to offer simple, but highly useful suggestions.” Chambers UK 2020
"There are not enough superlatives to do this gentleman justice; he has a prolific energy that galvanises his cases." Chambers UK 2019
"He instils great confidence in clients." Legal 500 2016
‘A very effective prosecutor, and also a very hardworking defence junior, who gets on very well with clients.’ Legal 500 2017
‘A masterful advocate – eloquent, sharp and irresistibly persuasive.’ Legal 500 2020