FRANCO TIZZANO

 

Called : 1989

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AREAS OF PRACTICE

Before com­ing into pri­vate prac­tice, Franco Tiz­zano worked as a Solic­i­tor for the Depart­ment of Trade and Indus­try where he dealt with finan­cial ser­vices, insider trading and corporate fraud.

Franco has dealt with a wide variety of fraud cases over the years including:

  • Carousel, VAT and MTIC frauds
  • Business, audit and banking frauds
  • VAT and tax frauds
  • Offences of fraudulent trading
  • Multi-jurisdictional frauds
  • Advance fee frauds.

In the course of this work he has also dealt with:

  • Issues concerning the freedom of establishment and the freedom to provide services in EU member states guaranteed by the Treaty of Rome to counter allegations of tax fraud made against companies registered in one Member State but operating in another Member State
  • Privacy, legal professional privilege and ECHR issues
  • Issues concerning the scope and legality of search warrants
  • Freezing orders, restraint orders and related injunctions
  • Disclosure issues resulting from the failure of applicants to make full and frank disclosure when seeking restraint orders
  • Allegations of money laundering.

Franco has also acted for and advised multi-national companies and directors of those companies in relation to issues involving mutual legal assistance, confiscation proceedings, and extradition.

In particular, he has advised one of the largest betting and gaming companies in the UK in relation to criminal proceedings that were threatened against it in another European State and which raised issues involving the interpretation of European Union law and the freedom of establishment as well as the freedom to provide cross-border services.

He has also advised and represented the directors and employees of one of the largest companies in India in relation to allegations of money laundering in the UK and applications to restrain the assets of those individuals pending criminal proceedings.

In addition, Franco has represented lawyers and employees of UK based firms accused of fraudulently selling property belonging to the firms they worked for and lawyers, and, employees accused of fraudulently misappropriating funds belonging to those firms.

Franco has had experience in conducting cases involving allegations of large scale fraud on mortgage companies and conveyancing frauds, in particular, where properties are obtained by companies who buy to let properties and misrepresent to mortgage companies the source of their deposit or the purchase price they have agreed with the seller of the property.

In addition, Franco has had experience in conducting cases involving large scale counterfeiting, especially of banknotes and has in-depth knowledge of the processes required to manufacture counterfeit currency. As a result, Franco is familiar with the expert evidence that is presented in such cases.

Franco’s expe­ri­ence of crim­i­nal defence work is now of a level that he reg­u­larly under­takes lead­ing work in cases involv­ing alle­ga­tions of fraud, money laun­der­ing, counterfeiting, seri­ous drug offences, seri­ous alle­ga­tions of vio­lence, seri­ous sex­ual offences and alle­ga­tions of cor­rup­tion made against police offi­cers and other pub­lic offi­cials.

Franco has represented police officers and police staff accused of sexual offences and has dealt with a number of cases involving allegations of historical sexual offences, some of which have dated as far back as thirty to forty years. He is therefore well versed in relation to the issues thrown up by such cases, in particular as to disclosure of social services, medical, counselling and school records.

In addi­tion, he has con­ducted mur­der tri­als alone and has under­taken the role of junior counsel in a num­ber of high pro­file cases that have attract­ed national media coverage.

Franco Tizzano has also conducted a number of cases involving allegations of gang membership, including gangs alleged to have been involved in the large scale supply or importation of drugs and motorcycle gangs involved in such offences or allegations of offences of violence, where the prosecution has sought to call expert evidence in relation to the structure and organisation of those gangs.

He has also dealt with a number of cases where the prosecution have sought anonymity in relation to prosecution witnesses who have witnessed serious crimes. Franco is therefore well versed in the issues that are raised with regard to the admissibility of such evidence and has successfully opposed applications for anonymity as well as applications made by the prosecution for the admission of expert evidence in relation to gangs.

Franco has also conducted a number of high profile inquests which have resulted in national media coverage, including deaths in police custody, patients who have died in hospital as a result of medical negligence and deaths that have arisen in the context of prolonged domestic abuse by one partner against another.

As well as inquests that have involved complicated medical issues as to the cause of death, Franco has also been involved in two, high profile cases involving the deaths of infants and alleged ‘shaken baby syndrome’.

Franco Tiz­zano prides him­self in the metic­u­lous prepa­ra­tion of his cases and in R v Xhel­lolari [2007] EWCA Crim 2052 the Court of Appeal stated the fol­low­ing in rela­tion to his grounds of appeal: ‘These points are most care­fully ampli­fied in the writ­ten opin­ion of Mr Tiz­zano, to which this court would wish to pay par­tic­u­lar trib­ute. Rarely has any of us seen an advice so cogently and help­fully presented.

 

NOTABLE CASES

Re Inquest into the death of GD – This was a case where Franco represented the father of a

heavily pregnant woman, GD, who had fallen to her death from a third-storey apartment block. Her boyfriend alleged that the fall had occurred as a result of misadventure when GD had climbed over the railing of a balcony during the course of a domestic argument. GD’s father was not convinced that this was what had occurred. However, the police had decided not to prosecute the boyfriend of GD on the basis that there was insufficient evidence to

establish that GD’s boyfriend had been the cause of GD’s death. Following detailed cross-examination of GD’s boyfriend at the inquest, the Coroner was not persuaded that the fall had been as a result of an accident or misadventure and returned an open verdict in relation to the cause of death.

R v CJ and others – A case involving multiple allegations of fraud in relation to buy to let properties, and, multiple allegations of fraud in relation to mortgage companies stretching back over many years. The volume of material served as evidence by the prosecution was such that the evidence was presented to the jury entirely on iPads.

R v CB and others – Successful acquittal of CB who was alleged to a member of a south London organised crime group involved with others in the robbery of a man and then subsequent attempts to pervert the course of justice by threatening the victim of the alleged robbery to withdraw the statement he had made to the police.

R v SM – Successful acquittal of a young man, alleged to be a member of a south London organised crime group, who was found in possession of a revolver and self-loading pistol and charged with firearms offences. An acquittal was achieved on the basis that it was proved that the firearms in questions were antique weapons and SM had them in his possession out of curiosity.

R v SO – Successful submission of no case to answer made in relation to a man charged with causing death by careless driving in relation to the death of a motorcyclist who was hit by a van SO was driving.

R v MS and others –MS was a member of ‘The Outlaws’ motorcycle club who was charged with others who belonged to that club with attacking a member of another motorcycle club and robbing him of his ‘colours’.

R v F.H. and others - Successful submission of no case to answer made in relation to the manager of a self-storage facility in London accused of being involved with others in a conspiracy to import and distribute counterfeit goods said to be worth millions of pounds.

R v AK & Others – AK and others, owners of a printing business, charged with conspiring to produce counterfeit £10 banknotes with a face value of millions of pounds. This was one of the most sophisticated counterfeiting operations ever investigated by the police involving the use of specialist printing equipment and specialist inks.

R v K.G and others - Successful acquittal of a man charged with murder, who had a history of committing violent offences. The defendant had been charged with others in attacking the home of a man against whom they had a grudge. In the course of the attack, the defendants were accused of having armed themselves with various weapons including machetes and a shotgun, and, had rammed the gates of the home of their intended victim using a stolen truck. K.G. had admitted being present at the scene of the murder but had denied participating in it or knowing of the plan to kill the victim.

R v S.K. & Others –

Successful submission of no case to answer, at the close of the defence case, with regard to allegations of multiple importations of large quantities of heroin.

R v H.A. & Another –

Successful application to dismiss charges arising from allegations of the importation of heroin through the postal system

R v A.G. & Others –

Secured acquittal of A.G. who was charged with a conspiracy to supply a firearm and ammunition, and, whose defence consisted of an admission that he had the firearm and ammunition for his own protection and not for the purposes of supplying the gun and ammunition to another.

R v M.F. –

Successful submission of no case to answer at the close of the prosecution case with regard to multiple allegations of sexual assault and assault by penetration of a nine-year-old girl by a man who had been employed by her parents to teach the nine-year-old girl the Koran. The prosecution appealed the ruling made by the trial judge to the Court of Appeal, which dismissed the prosecution appeal.

R v A.W. & Another –

Verdict of not guilty entered in relation to allegations of robbery following a successful submission to exclude evidence of identification obtained through flawed video identification procedures conducted by the police.

R v D.S. -

Prosecution offered no evidence following multiple applications by the defence for disclosure in a case involving allegations of rape and the supply of Class A drugs, the applications having led to the discovery that the complainant had made false allegations of sexual assault against a serving police officer and false allegations of other crimes to the police.

R v Al-Ansari and oth­ers – Multi-million pound money laun­der­ing offences aris­ing from the largest drug sup­ply­ing oper­a­tion ever dis­rupted by the police in Lon­don.

R v Thalla & Oth­ers – Money laun­der­ing offences aris­ing from a wide-ranging immi­gra­tion fraud. 
R v RA - His­toric alle­ga­tions of rape and inde­cent assault said to have taken place 30 years ago made by a num­ber of com­plainants against a school care­taker.

R v DS & another – Con­spir­acy to sup­ply heroin involv­ing the largest seizure of this drug in West York­shire, the heroin hav­ing a value of over £3million.

R-v– Morally & Oth­ers involv­ing kid­nap, tor­ture and mur­der of two young girls in Read­ing; 
R v Gib­son and Another involv­ing the mur­der of a young boy by other young boys out­side a school in Ful­ham; 
R v Nowakowska and R v Hen­der­son both cases involv­ing the alle­ga­tion of the mur­der of a baby by a babysit­ter; and

R v Hama and Oth­ers involv­ing the ‘hon­our killing’ of a young woman by mem­bers of her own family.

 

MEMBERSHIPS

Mem­ber of Crim­i­nal Bar Association

 

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