Duncan Jones specialises in criminal and white-collar defence advice, advocacy and investigations. He is ranked as a leading junior in Chambers & Partners for Financial Crime, and in the Legal 500 for both Fraud and Business and Regulatory Crime (including Global Investigations).
Duncan advises individual and business clients facing investigation and prosecution by a range of agencies, including the Serious Fraud Office, the US Department of Justice, HM Revenue and Customs, the Financial Conduct Authority, and the Crown Prosecution Service.
He is frequently instructed to represent professionals, high profile, and high net-worth individuals in relation to sensitive matters. He has acted for individuals at trial and pre-charge in several major SFO investigations and was junior defence counsel for Ziad Akle in relation to Unaoil, eventually resulting in the Court of Appeal quashing convictions because of SFO disclosure failures (R v Akle  EWCA Crim 1879).
Duncan is an experienced trial advocate. His practice encompasses proceedings at all levels of the English criminal courts. His recent cases include boiler-room frauds, international VAT and excise diversion fraud, international bribery and corruption, and ‘rogue trader’ fraud worth many millions of pounds.
In 2017-18 Duncan was part of a transatlantic team representing Richard Usher, a former foreign exchange trader who was prosecuted by the US Department of Justice for conspiracy to fix prices in the $5 trillion-per-day global foreign exchange market. Mr Usher was acquitted of all charges by a federal jury in the Southern District of New York.
Duncan has specialist experience of litigation concerning the proceeds of crime, including account freezing orders, cash (and other property) seizure and forfeiture proceedings, restraint and asset recovery. He worked as a Legal Officer in the criminal finance litigation department of HM Revenue and Customs and has represented various defendants facing confiscation enforcement proceedings, as well as third parties seeking to protect their interests in confiscation and restraint proceedings. He has extensive experience representing offshore corporations in proceedings under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and challenges to search warrants and production orders.
He advises businesses, professional services firms, charities, and independent schools in relation to anti-money-laundering and Suspicious Activity Reports. He has rapidly developing experience advising crypto-currency traders in relation to money laundering investigations.
In general crime, Duncan has successfully defended clients facing allegations of organised crime including national conspiracies to supply drugs, conspiracy to handle stolen goods, conspiracy to import tobacco, and conspiracy to rob. He has acted for defendants accused serious violence, weapons offences and sexual offences. In 2016-17 he was a led junior in the largest ‘modern-slavery’ trial ever prosecuted in this jurisdiction.
Duncan has substantial experience of a range of motoring law matters including drink and drug driving, dangerous driving, careless driving, vehicle and licencing offences. He is experienced in assisting defendants in relation to prosecutions involving fatal accidents.
Duncan has advised businesses and individuals accused in regulatory proceedings including for breaches of Human Medicines Regulation, environmental offences, and police disciplinary hearings.
Prior to coming to the Bar, Duncan worked at Corker Binning, a leading firm of solicitors, where he gained considerable experience of a range of white collar and general criminal matters including international bribery and corruption, fraud, regulatory offences, serious violence, sexual offences and driving offences. Clients included governments, corporations, bankers, politicians, sportsmen and private individuals. He worked on several high-profile investigations and prosecutions including the parliamentary expenses investigation, the Pakistan cricketers’ spot-fixing trial, and preparations for the trial of Vicky Pryce and Chris Huhne
- “Duncan is smart, insightful, incisive and a future star of the Bar." - Legal 500 2023: Business and Regulatory Crime (including Global Investigations).
- “Duncan is excellent. Hard-working and committed, with great insight on strategic issues and a complete understanding of the landscape.” - Legal 500 2023: Fraud: Crime.
- “He knows the law inside out." - Chambers UK 2023: Financial Crime.
- “Duncan is fantastic. He is bright, helpful and has great judgement." - Chambers UK 2023: Financial Crime.
- “He is a delight to work with” - Chambers UK 2023: Financial Crime.
- “Trusted and well-liked by clients” - Legal 500 2022: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- “Duncan's drafting is fantastic, and so is his calm and measured approach.” - Legal 500 2022: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- “Incredibly diligent and hardworking” - Legal 500 2022: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- “Really gets into the detail of a case.”- Legal 500 2022: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- “An unbelievably hard worker with total mastery of the papers. He can see the wood for the trees. Excellent client care skills.” - Legal 500 2021: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- “Personable with clients and calm in a crisis”- Legal 500 2020: Business and Regulatory Crime.
- BPTC - City Law School (Outstanding) (2011)
- LLB (Joint Hons.) Law and Human Rights - University of Essex (2008)
Prizes / Awards
- Michael Jaffa Prize (2013)
- Inner Temple prize for outstanding performance in BPTC examinations (2011)
- Winner of the national BPTC criminal trial competition (2011)
- Inner Temple exhibitioner (2010)