Attempted arson with intent to endanger life
Ben Holt acted for the Crown in this case where the Defendant was convicted of attempted arson with intent to endanger life after placing an incendiary device in the exhaust pipe of a diplomatic car parked outside the Iranian Embassy [Instructed by CPS, CTD].
Buying a grenade over the ‘dark web’
Grenfell Tower Fraud
Attempted Murder of Police Officers
Conspiracy to defraud the N.H.S and D.o.H
Ben Holt appeared in this 8-week, seven-handed, prosecution trial acting as led junior. Allegations related to the application to the Department of Health for grants in order to improve care homes by a Hospice in Somerset. Seven-handed conspiracy to defraud the NHS and DoH in relation to tenders made for building projects. Instructed by CPS SFD Manchester.
£Multi-Million MTIC Fraud
The case was an MTIC Fraud which was part and parcel of Import Duty Diversion on Beers, Wines and Spirits. According to HMRC the OCG were accountable for significant losses to the UK Exchequer through associated large scale VAT and Excise duty frauds. The group also conducted a substantial money laundering operation in relation to the proceeds of these crimes which was believed to be in excess of £86 million.
13 different individuals were said to be involved along with a whole host of MTIC and Buffer companies some of which sold on the BWS to end user Cash & Carries who were never investigated.
The case was split into two trials with Mr Aslam D1 in Trial 2. As the case developed there were significant issues with the evidence and associated disclosure problems which related to material that had been withheld by HMRC and should have been disclosed far in advance of the trial itself. After considerable legal argument in Mr Aslam’s case we were able to restrict the alleged loss to HMRC to less than £7k.
Ultimately Mr Aslam was convicted but only received a Suspended Sentence Order.
Importation of Anabolic Steroids from India & Singapore
Ben Holt has successfully prosecuted a case involving the importation of unlicensed anabolic steroids (AAS) from India and Singapore. The gang imported more than 40 tonnes of illicit anabolic steroids and is said to be ‘the most prolific of its kind ever uncovered'. One member of that gang was also linked to another gang involved in the production and distribution of steroids from an underground AAS factory in the United Kingdom. Five Defendants were convicted following two six week trials.
Instructed by the CPS Organised Crime Division; investigated by the NCA in Belfast.
Multi handed conspiracy to money launder and commit fraud
£7 million Ponzi Fraud Scheme
Ben Holt led Junior counsel in Prosecution of two defendants accused of a ‘Ponzi’ fraud. Losses amongst the defendants exceeded £7m. Both defendants convicted after trial. Both received the maximum sentence available – 10 years’ imprisonment.
Rape of ex-wife and two daughters
Violent disorder arising out of an attack on an asylum seeker in Croydon
Two linked trials. Jonathan Polnay led Ben Holt in the first and Ben Holt led Dickon Reid in the second. A total of 14 defendants were charged with violent disorder arising out of an attack on an asylum seeker in Croydon. The case attracted international media attention. Instructed to SCU at CPS London.
Fraud of the Grenfell Tower victim fund
Ben Holt prosecuted the Finance Manager of the Grenfell Finance Team. She was employed by the RBK&C to assist in providing financial assistance to victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster. However, she stole £62,062 from prepaid credit cards that were allocated to survivors of the fire. During the course of the investigation into that allegation, it transpired that the defendant had defrauded her previous employer, the NHS. Defendant received a custodial sentence of 5-and-a-half years. Instructed by SCU, London.
Ben Holt was instructed by the Prosecution for the trial of an ‘acid attack’ case. The victim was lured to a park in Isleworth by the defendant. A substance was thrown at him by another, unidentified, male. Victim lost his eye as a result of the attack. He gave evidence with the assistance of an intermediary. Defendant was convicted and sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment.
Blackmail and misconduct in a public office
Ben Holt was instructed to defend a Detective Constable charged with blackmail and misconduct in a public office. S had used the PNC to find out personal details of an individual who was using the services of a prostitute. He then blackmailed him. Pleaded guilty. Sentence referred to the CoA by the A-G as being unduly lenient. Instructed by Slater & Gordon.
Ben Holt was Prosecution counsel at this trial of attempted murder. The defendant had run over an acquaintance with whom he was having a disagreement. Convicted of section 18 and sentenced to nine years’ imprisonment.
Conspiracy to steal motor vehicles
Ben Holt acted for the Crown, Daniels was charged with two others with conspiracy to steal motor vehicles. He worked for a BMW dealership and was convicted of stealing car keys and customer’s personal details before passing them on to other conspirators who would steal the cars that had been sold from his place of work. His co-defendants pleaded Guilty at PTPH; with one of them giving evidence for the Crown against Daniels. On conviction, Daniels was sentenced to 63 months’ imprisonment.
13 handed Violent Disorder following illegal 'rave'
Catherine Pattison led Ben Holt in the Prosecution of 13 defendants for violent disorder that arose out of an illegal rave organised to take place on the night of Hallowe’en 2015 by a group called ‘Scumtek’. The violence was described as the worst in London since the riots of 2011 and resulted in the largest deployment of Police Officers since that time.
News reports here:
£2m 'Rare Earth Metal' Fraud
Jonathan Polnay led Ben Holt in this “boiler room” rare earth metals fraud. Both Defendants were convicted after trial of selling worthless Rare Earth Metals as part of an investment. The total value of the scam was £1.9m. Both defendants were convicted and sentenced to a total of 11 years’ imprisonment. Instructed by CPS Headquarters Central Fraud Group.
Standing Order Fraud
Jonathan Polnay led Ben Holt for the Crown in a nine-handed standing order fraud that was set up and orchestrated by an inside man working with Nationwide bank. Case involved a considerable amount of forensic and banking evidence. (Investigated by DCPCU, instructed by CPS SCU). Jury were unable to reach a verdict on defendant said to be “inside man”. Prosecuted re-trial alone and the defendant was convicted. Mail Online news report.
Ben Holt prosecution counsel in an armed robbery trial. Crown’s case relied solely on ANPR, cell site and other circumstantial evidence. Defendant convicted and imprisoned for life.
Ben Holt represented the husband of an NHS employee, in a prosecution brought by NHS Protect. The wife was alleged to have stolen £300,000 from her employer whilst working for the NHS. The husband was said to have acquired the criminal property. Significant quantity of evidence served (over 10,000 pages). Ben acted alone; other parties in the trial had two counsel. Hung jury. Evening Standard news report.
Card fraud by ATM skimming
Catherine Pattison led Ben Holt for the prosecution in two separate sets of proceedings relating to Romanian nationals who were charged with card fraud by ATM “skimming”. This was sophisticated organised crime group who were making equipment to capture individuals’ bank account details when they inserted their cards into an ATM. A total of 13 defendants were charged with offences ranging from conspiracy to defraud, possessing articles for use in fraud and transferring criminal property. (Investigated by DCPCU, instructed by CPS SCU). Mirror Online news report.
Conspiracy to supply class A drugs
Gordon Carse led Ben Holt for the defence in this multi-handed Class A conspiracy trial. The defendant was alleged to have been part of a conspiracy to supply over £600,000 of cocaine in and around the Portsmouth area. The defendant’s involvement and role were underpinned by cocaine found in his possession, call data and text messages. The defendant was acquitted. Sentences totalling 54 years imprisonment were handed down.
Firearms and drugs
Ben Holt represented a defendant charged with possession of firearm with intent to endanger life and drug supply offences. Convicted of the drug matters and simple possession of the gun. Sentenced to an eight-year term of imprisonment.
Catherine Pattison led Ben Holt for the prosecution in this 5-handed kidnap trial. This case involved counsel reviewing a considerable amount of unused material. This included downloads from over 40 mobile telephones.There were numerous issues relating to sensitive disclosure. The case against the defendants was solely reliant on cell-site and tracker evidence. One defendant was convicted and received a prison sentence of 12 years. Instructed to draft respondent’s notice to appeal. Leave refused; renewed in front of the full Court and refused. (Investigated by Kidnap & Special Investigation Unit of the Met, instructed by CPS SCU).