James Kyle


Year of Call: 2010

Practice Group(s): Crime

Portrait of James Kyle

BA (Hons) Ancient History, Newcastle University
Graduate Diploma in Law, BPP Law School
Bar Vocational Course, Northumbria University

Practice Profile:
James has experience in all areas of criminal law and primarily undertakes instructions in cases involving bribery, corruption and financial crime.

James has a reputation as a determined barrister who provides an outstanding service to both his professional and lay clients. His meticulous case preparation, intelligent advocacy and strong interpersonal skills make him a popular choice for solicitors across numerous legal fields.

James has expertise in business crime, and regularly accepts instructions in cases involving financial and regulatory investigations into widespread international bribery and corruption against both corporates and professionals. James’s in depth knowledge of financial crime comes from having defended, investigated and prosecuted some of the most complex and challenging allegations of bribery and corruption in recent years. This experience is recognised by his appointment to the SFO Advocate Panel Scheme. Having acted for all sides in this field, James is able to provide insightful advice in relation to every stage of an investigation into both corporates and individuals alike.

In addition to business crime, James has dealt with a range of serious and complex cases concerning allegations of violence, dishonesty, drugs and sexual offences. James also has experience in cases involving fraud and related matters, including cash forfeiture and confiscation proceedings.

Notable Cases:
Business Crime

SFO v Alstom Network UK and others
James was instructed as junior counsel for Terence Watson (formerly Alstom’s country president for the UK and managing director of Alstom Transport UK & Ireland) in the SFO’s investigation into Alstom Group. Mr Watson was acquitted following his trial at Southwark Crown Court.

SFO v Rolls Royce PLC and others
James was instructed as junior counsel as part of the SFO’s counsel team in the investigation into Rolls Royce Plc, which has so far resulted in a Deferred Prosecution Agreement against the corporate. James remains instructed by the SFO to advise in the ongoing investigation. The Rolls Royce investigation is one of the highest profile bribery and corruption cases ever to be prosecuted in the UK and has already resulted in a record fine for a corporate body.

James is currently acting as junior counsel in the SFO's investigation into the commercial practices of a major UK plc.

James is currently acting as counsel for the SFO in a criminal investigation focused on widespread allegations of fraud, bribery and corruption.

Other Legal

Voluntary Work
James has also worked as a volunteer for the Free Representation Unit and various Legal Advice Centres, giving advice on a pro-bono basis in relation to wide ranging issues.

Further Professional Information:
Appointed to the SFO Advocate Panel Scheme (Band B)
Middle Temple JJ Powell Middle Temple Scholarship

James is a keen sportsman with rugby, football (unfortunately a Sunderland fan) and cycling being his personal favourites. James has also represented both professional and semi-professional Rugby Union sides since the age of 18. In addition to sport, James has a strong interest in music and travel (when time permits!)