Christopher Grout

Year of call: 2007

Christopher’s practice is predominantly criminal defence, with experience of defending in the Crown, Magistrates and Youth Courts.

Christopher is currently on secondment as Acting Registrar to the Qatar International Court and Dispute Resolution Centre in Doha.

Expertise

Christopher particularly enjoys defending in the Youth Court and has successfully represented young people charged with a variety of offences including sexual assault, violent disorder, ABH, affray, robbery, burglary, theft and possession of Class A drugs. In the Crown Court, Christopher has secured acquittals in cases of witness intimidation, exposure, possession with intent to supply Class B drugs, racially aggravated criminal damage, dangerous driving and common assault. Christopher has also appeared before the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) and the Divisional Court when representing clients in judicial review proceedings.

In addition to crime, Christopher also accepts instructions to appear in the civil courts, having in the past represented both claimants and defendants in a variety of cases involving breach of contract, debt recovery, property repossession and personal injury.

Qualifications

LL.B (Hons) (University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne) 2006

Professional Associations

Criminal Bar Association
Extradition Lawyers Association
Ecclesiastical Law Society

Notable Cases

R v JP and Others – Represented a defendant who was one of a number charged with violent disorder arising out of an incident at Westfield Shopping Centre in Stratford which culminated in a boy getting stabbed. JP was acquitted after trial, the defence advanced being that whilst he accepted presence at the shopping centre, he denied any involvement in the violent disorder.

R v M and Another – Represented a defendant who was charged alongside a co-defendant with one count of dangerous driving. The evidence of the alleged standard of driving came from the testimony of a number of police officers. The judge upheld a submission of no case to answer.

R v M – Magistrates accepted a submission that there were special reasons not to endorse the defendant’s driving licence with penalty points where the defendant had driven a delivery van with no insurance, but when he genuinely believed that he was insured as a result of what he had been told by another.

R v K – The defendant was charged with common assault of his infant son. The only evidence of the alleged assault came from the oral testimony of the defendant’s wife. The defendant was acquitted.

R v N – An interesting case of an alleged sssault on a civil enforcement officer which resulted in a stay for abuse of process, the essential argument being that the police officers had failed to obtain CCTV footage which would have covered the alleged incident.

Professional Appointments

Registrar of the Qatar International Court and Dispute Resolution Centre in Doha, Qatar

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Reported Cases

R (on the Application of Kandice Firth) v Epping Magistrates’ Court [2011] 1 WLR 1818; [2011] 1 Cr App R 32; [2011] EWHC 388 (Admin) – Represented the claimant in judicial review proceedings. She had been committed for trial on the basis of information contained within a case progression form that had been filled in by her legal representative at an earlier hearing. The case received substantial publicity in the legal press. Articles have been published in the Criminal Law Review, the Law Society Gazette and the Solicitor’s Journal. 
Administrative Court, 3rd February 2011

Pro Bono Work

Christopher is committed to Pro Bono work and provides regular advice and assistance to ‘Pro Bono in the LMC’, a free legal advice clinic based in Whitechapel. He helped to organise the well-reported lecture, given by the then Lord Chief Justice, Lord Phillips of Worth Matravers, on ‘Equality in Justice’ and, more recently, the lecture given by Sir Mark Potter, President of the Family Division, on the topic of ‘Forced Marriages’.

Other Experience

Prior to joining Chambers, Christopher worked for the Ministry of Justice. Specifically, he worked in the Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) dealing with applications seeking leave to appeal, as well as the substantive appeals themselves. Christopher also has experience working with young offenders and in dealing with youth crime generally, having worked as part of the Youth Offending Team whilst living in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.