criminal barrister Lee Karu KC

Year of Call 1985

Karu KC

Door Tenant

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Areas of Practice

  • Criminal Defence
  • Serious Crime
  • Financial Crime
  • Fraud, Bribery & Corruption
  • Sexual Offences
  • Confiscation/POCA


  • King’s Counsel – 2010

Professional Memberships

  • Criminal Bar Association
  • Lincoln’s Inn


Lee is a highly experienced criminal barrister specialising in cases that require expert advocacy skills. He has a varied practice with over 30 years’ experience in criminal law at all levels. Due to his comprehensive experience, he is widely instructed in complex cases across the country. Not exclusively his practice includes homicide, serious sexual offences, financial crime, fraud, drug trafficking, violent crime and international cases of drugs and human trafficking successfully defending a range of clients.

Lee is Public Access accredited and accepts direct instructions from lay clients.

Notable Cases

R v H (2020) – The defendant, a drug dealer was charged with murder. Following a trial at Birmingham Crown Court he was acquitted.

R v L (2019) – Multi defendant modern day slavery case of a Romanian family.

R v B (2018) – Attempted murder heard at Canterbury Crown Court. Charged with 7 counts of attempted murder on account of driving into a crowd of people standing outside of a pub.

R v P (2018) – Defendant initially charged on a 22-count indictment which was later reduced. Threatening letters and articles sent to leading politicians including the Prime Minister. Heard at the Central Criminal Court and investigated by the Anti-Terrorism unit.

R v H & Others (2017) – Fraud case heard at Leeds Crown Court featuring two brothers with prominent positions in the Metropolitan Police.

R v A (2015) – Multi handed grooming case featuring 9 men accused of raping underage girls. Liverpool Crown Court.


R v B – Gang smuggling extensive amounts of cocaine.

R v W – Substantial production of amphetamines resulting in a £10 million confiscation.

R v L – Country wide cannabis production and money laundering. Reported as the highest value cannabis production in the UK.

Sexual Offences

R v S – West Yorkshire grooming gang groomed and abused girls as young as 12 years old. Very high-profile case reported by the news media nationally.

R v W – The rape and abuse of young children by their parents.

R v C – Eastern Europe human trafficking, victim was abused, raped, and forced into prostitution.

Robbery & Burglary 

R v S – The defendant was charged with multiple armed robberies of banks and building societies.

R v B – Aggravated burglary of exceptionally high value properties. Defendant was labelled by the media as the “first million-pound burglar”.

Financial Crime 

R v D – Extensive counterfeit of designer jewellery.

R v G – Expansive tax scheme related to the avoidance of paying tax by licensed doormen country wide.

R v O – Comprehensive money laundering and mortgage fraud.

International Crime

R v B & Others – A vast international drugs conspiracy spanning South America, North America and Europe.

R v H & Others – A high profile case where several defendants were charged with the hijacking of a passenger airline which ultimately landed in the UK travelling from Cyprus.

R v R – International conspiracy mutually implicating immigrants and gang members as well as a customs officer in respect of the granting of illegal visas.

International Crime (Financial)

R v Y – Large scale fraud relating to the production of counterfeit pharmaceuticals produced in China and smuggled into Europe and the UK.

R v N & Others – Extensive international cybercrime involving many countries and nationals in relation to the trading of card details over the internet.

R v B – Fraud relating to the production of cheque cards produced in China via the use of skimming machines.

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