Douglas Wotherspoon

INTRODUCTION

Douglas specialises in criminal defence and prosecution and appears regularly in the Crown Court, Magistrates’ Court, and Youth Court.

Douglas provides clients with considered, focused advice and is a calm and tenacious advocate in court.

BACKGROUND AND EXPERTISe

Douglas has experience prosecuting and defending a wide range of criminal offences including violence, drug offences, firearms, weapons, dishonesty, and road traffic offences. Further, Douglas has experience and interest in representing vulnerable adults and youths, and has undertaken the cross examination of vulnerable witnesses and complainants.

Additionally, Douglas is a member of the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple’s Education and Training Committee.

Douglas was called to the Bar in 2020 following completion of the BPTC, during which Douglas placed first in his cohort for advanced criminal litigation and ranked in the top 1% for all advocacy modules. Douglas has also gained experience at a leading criminal litigation practice known for representing high net worth and high-profile individuals, specialising in serious and general crime and fraud and financial crime.

Previously, Douglas was a professional musician, touring internationally for a major record label.

Current and Ongoing Cases

R v F & R

Possession of ammunition for a firearm without a certificate.

R v X (a child)

Instructed under certificate for assigned counsel in regard to a Robbery.

R v X (a child)

Witness intimidation and threats to kill in relation to three complainant children arising from an attempt murder.

Notable Cases

R v G, 2022 - The Central Criminal Court

The defendant pleaded guilty to two unrelated non-residential burglaries, one to a jewellery shop and the other to a newsagent. Both burglaries were in the top category of the sentencing guideline and involved tens of thousands of pounds of loss and damage to the businesses. In reliance on Douglas’ submissions the court passed a suspended sentence.

R v N, 2022

An accusation of ABH was made by the defendant’s partner. The defendant was heavily convicted, and several offences were of violence. Following legal argument Douglas was successful in the exclusion of the body worn video of the complainant’s first account and of the defendant’s bad character. Following cross examination of the complainant Douglas successfully made a submission of no case to answer.

R v R, 2021 - Gloucester Crown Court

The defendant deliberately drove his car into the complainant motorcyclist who was thrown from his vehicle. The Crown sought to rely on case law to suggest that the defendant should be subject to immediate custody. Douglas distinguished case law and the defendant received a suspended sentence and 100 hours of unpaid work.

R v H, 2021 - Southwark Crown Court

The defendant entered guilty pleas to a significant number of burglaries and breaches of criminal behaviour orders and was remanded in custody. In reliance of Douglas’ sentencing note and oral submissions, the sentencing judge passed several concurrent suspended sentences. The defendant was released from custody the same day.

R v A-M, 2021

Defending criminal damage captured on CCTV and by an eyewitness. Douglas identified a period of seconds where the eyewitness did not have sight of the defendant. In cross examination the eyewitness accepted that owing to that period of seconds he was unable to be sure that it was the defendant who inflicted the damage. The defendant was acquitted.

R v M, 2021

Defending charges of assaulting an emergency worker and drunk and disorderly behaviour, Douglas challenged the account given by the complainant police officer. Following submissions on intention, recklessness, and the absence of collaborative evidence the defendant was acquitted.

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PROFILE: Douglas Wotherspoon

Year called

2020

Specialisms

Crime

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Crime

Youth Crime

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Youth Crime

Road Traffic

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Road traffic

Education

LLB Honours Law Degree, The University of Manchester, 2019 (First Class).

Bar Professional Training Course, BPP University Law School, 2020.

Honours & Awards

Sir Edward Marshall-Hall Scholarship, The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple (2020)

Major Scholarship, The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple (2019).

Duke of Edinburgh Scholarship, The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple (2019).

PASS Scholarship, The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple (2018).

Advocacy Scholarship, BPP University Law School (2019).

Excellence Scholarship, BPP University Law School (2019).

Memberships

The Criminal Bar Association.

Young Legal Aid Lawyers Association.

The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple.

Appointments

CPS Panel (Grade 1)