Richard Potts

Richard Potts practices predominantly in East Anglia, where he both defends and prosecutes criminal cases up to the most serious level.

He is on the CPS Advocate Panel at level 4 for both London and the South Eastern Circuit generally and is an accredited rape prosecutor.

Richard is also regularly instructed to defend in criminal trials of complexity and gravity and has experience of regulatory work and courts martial.

He is also registered for direct access work.

Notable Cases

R v T & 6 others <2014> - The defence (junior alone) of one defendant in a substantial conspiracy to defraud covering several years and with losses actual and attempted of approximately £7 million.

R v W & H <2014> - The prosecution of two defendants charged with the kidnap and robbery of a man with quadriplegic spasticity who is mute. The trial involved extensive and novel uses of special measures to facilitate the victim giving evidence and also required considerable skill and sensitivity.

R v L (& 4 others) - As a junior alone Richard defended one of five tried for the murder of a man in the street.

R v Keith W <2012> EWCA Crim 355 - An interesting case where Richard appeared for the prosecution and in which the Court of Appeal, in refusing leave to appeal against conviction, upheld the decision of the trial judge to admit evidence of bad character relating to convictions for sexual misconduct against young females when trying a defendant for sexual offending against a young male on the issue of propensity.

R v W <2011> - The successful defence of a man charged with numerous counts of historic rape of the same victim.

R v O'B <2011> - The defence (junior alone) of a man charged with the murder of a housemate. Unusual circumstances of death involved extensive cross-examination of Home Office pathologist.

R v T <2010> - The prosecution of a man for conspiracy to burgle involving 92 dwellings across East Anglia. A highly complex case with difficult issues of presenting the case in such a way as to make it 'jury friendly'.

R v W <2010> - The prosecution of man for sexual misconduct against three generations of one family.

R v S, C & J <2008>. (Leading junior) - Successful prosecution of a murder case, of a second defendant for manslaughter and ABH and a third for attempting to pervert the course of justice. The case involved extensive arguments on the admissibility of bad character evidence and the fitness to be tried of one of the accused, arising unexpectedly mid-trial. One notable feature of the case was the highly unusual cause of death –the rupture of the pharyngeal wall following insertion of a walking stick through the throat. Upheld on appeal - <2010> EWCA Crim 1149

R v D <2007>. (Leading junior) - The defence of one of 13 defendants in a very large case alleging brothel-keeping and POCA offences. Originally briefed at pre-committal stage he secured the discharge of 3 of the 5 charges at an old-style committal. The defendant subsequently admitted two courts but on a very limited basis.

R v G <2006>. (Leading junior) - The prosecution of a serial paedophile (dubbed “The Pied Piper of Horning”) successfully convicted of rape, indecent assault and other sexual activity with children in respect of 12 victims over a 20-year period in Essex and Norfolk. The case involving some very young child witnesses resulting in a week-long voir dire arguing the admissibility of video interviews following alleged breached of ABE guidelines.

R v K <2004>. (Leading junior) - The defence of the proprietor of a care home originally arrested for manslaughter but subsequently prosecuted under the Health & Safety Act, the Mental Health Act (neglect/ill treatment of patients) and the Offences against the Person Act (administering noxious substance). A very large and highly technical case (medically) ultimately resolved by pleas of guilty on a very limited basis.

R v H <2004> (Leading junior) - Four defendants (Proprietor and staff of a school for children with special needs) were charged with allegations of historical abuse dating back to the 1970/80’s. The trial lasted about 10 weeks ad involved considerable legal argument. His client (a teacher) faced four counts. One count was stayed as an abuse; two were dismissed for want of evidence. The client was acquitted on the final charge by the jury. The case involved abuse of process arguments based on delay and unavailability of contemporaneous documents. 

The case was classified as a VHCC. The other defendants were convicted –on appeal reported as Robson, Robson &Wilson <2006> EWCA Crim 2754.

R v V & V <2004> EWCA 2233 (Leading junior) -  Successful prosecution of a mother (proprietor) and son (manager) charged with ill treatment of residents of a care home. The indictment contained 20 counts. Throughout, the case relied upon evidence of people other than the residents themselves who were all patients within the definition of the Mental Health Act. The case highlighted shortcomings of the inspection of such homes and prompted the jury to add a rider to that effect to their verdict.


  • Criminal Bar Association
  • South Eastern Circuit
  • East Anglian Bar Mess
  • Essex Bar Mess