Karl Masi

Year of Call: 2011

Karl is a barrister practising in the fields of business crime and associated civil and regulatory law.

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Overview

Karl is a barrister developing a practice with a focus on financial crime and associated civil and regulatory proceedings.

Business Crime

Karl receives a range instructions in this area, from general fraud to cases related to the proceeds of crime, money laundering and insider dealing. Karl has a developed knowledge of the various investigatory powers introduced by the Criminal Finance Act 2017 and was recently instructed as counsel for the Met Police in the largest operation by the newly formed National Economic Crime Centre in which applications were made for Account Freezing Orders. As a result, Karl is equally comfortable representing defendants and/or respondents and prosecuting authorities in the full range of financial crime matters.

Karl has received instructions from the FCA in relation to its Forex Investigation and was instructed as junior counsel to a Barclays’ derivatives trader charged with conspiracy to manipulate LIBOR. He was recently seconded to the Anti-Financial Crime department of an international investment bank, where he advised on whistleblowing, internal investigations and regulatory requirements. As a result, Karl has developed a broad understanding of corporate crime and investigations from a variety of perspectives, both domestic and foreign.

Confiscation, Civil Recovery & Asset Forfeiture

Karl spent a year on the Attorney General’s Baby Barrister scheme within the Civil Recovery Team of the NCA. Since being appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of Counsel (Civil) he has continued to be instructed to act in and advise on Part 5 (Civil Recovery) and Part 6 (Tax) POCA proceedings. In this regard, he regularly appears before the High Court and the First-tier Tribunal (Tax) in a range of related matters, from applications for disclosure and property freezing orders to substantive hearings. Karl continues to be instructed in complex confiscation and forfeiture matters. Karl is keen to develop his defence practice in this and related areas.

General Crime

Karl maintains a strong general crime practice in the Crown Court with a focus on defence work. He has been led by senior counsel and as junior alone in a wide range of matters from attempted murder, s.18 GBH, robbery and drugs offences to theft, burglary and public order offences. He also undertakes an increasing amount of appellate advisory work.

Off-shore

Building on his work in off-shore jurisdictions prior to being called to the Bar, Karl has developed experience in areas where crime and civil law cross-over. He worked for several months with an off-shore law firm advising on allegations of trustee fraud in several breach of trust cases within the jurisdiction.  He was also led by Gary Pons in the High Court acting for the successful applicant enforcing a multi-million pound US judgment in the UK.

General Civil

Whilst not a mainstay of his practice, Karl continues to provide both advisory and representation in a range of chancery and commercial matters from insolvency proceedings and contractual disputes to landlord and tenant litigation.

Professional panel appointments

  • Appointed to the Attorney General's C Panel of counsel (civil) (February 2017)
  • Appointed to CPS Advocate Panel Level 2 (2016)
  • Appointed to the General Dental Council (GDC) advocates panel (2016)

Additional information

Awards

  • Anne Goddard Scholarship, Gray’s Inn (2010).
  • William Shaw Scholarship, Gray’s Inn (2013).
  • James Hunt Advocacy Competition runner up, Gray’s Inn (April 2013).

Prior to joining Chambers, Karl held various legal roles both in the UK and abroad. This included an off-shore firm of attorneys in the Turks and Caicos Islands where he was part of a defence team representing politicians and an international developer on corruption and fraud charges. He was also heavily involved in commercial, regulatory and employment litigation in the jurisdiction.

Karl also worked as a paralegal in the Business Crime department of Hickman & Rose solicitors where he was involved in matters relating to LIBOR, the Bribery Act 2010, multi-jurisdictional investigations and Operation Weeting (phone hacking scandal).

Karl’s other roles include working for a legal organisation in the West Bank and acting as a caseworker on death penalty appeals before the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the United Nations Human Rights Committee.

Professional Memberships

  • Young Fraud Lawyer’s Association.
  • Association of Disciplinary and Regulatory Lawyers.
  • Criminal Bar Association.

Asset Recovery, Civil Fraud & Confiscation + View All Specialist Areas

Karl spent a year on the Attorney General’s Baby Barrister scheme within the Civil Recovery Team of the NCA. Since being appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of Counsel (Civil) he has continued to be instructed to act in and advise on Part 5 (Civil Recovery) and Part 6 (Tax) POCA proceedings. In this regard, he regularly appears before the High Court and the First-tier Tribunal (Tax) in a range of related matters, from applications for disclosure and property freezing orders to substantive hearings. Karl continues to be instructed in complex confiscation and forfeiture matters. Karl is keen to develop his defence practice in this and related areas.

Cases of Note

SCS v Parrish [2015] EWHC 3688 (QB)

Instructed as junior to Gary Pons. Successfully enforced a multi-million pound US judgment for fraud in the High Court.

R v BP & Others

Instructed as sole counsel in a 10-handed fraud, representing the first defendant on charges of conspiracy to defraud and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

R v P [2015] Cardiff Crown Court

Sole counsel representing the Director of a multi-million pound waste management company in confiscation proceedings. Successfully applied against the lifting of the corporate veil. This ruling is being challenged before the Court of Appeal.

R v S [2015] Blackfriars Crown Court

Successful half-time argument of no case to answer on charges of money laundering and perverting the course of justice. Successful recovery of monies seized under cash forfeiture legislation.

R v B [2015] Southend Crown Court

Acquittal of a 19 year old female charged with benefit fraud.

R v T & R [2014] Woolwich Crown Court

Successful prosecution of a two handed burglary and possession of offensive weapon

The Government of the Czech Republic v Dogaev [2014]

Led by Ben Keith in a complex case involving a former Russian banker whose extradition was sought for endangering the safety of an aircraft. The EAW followed a previous Russian request for the same incident. Appeal pending.

The Government of Poland v Szcesniak [2014]

The Requested Person’s extradition was sought to serve the remainder of three custodial sentences in Poland. EAW discharged on Article 8 grounds.

Jasek v The Government of Poland [2013] EWHC 4186 (Administrative Court)

Appeared for the appellant challenging the rule that the Court had no power to extend time, in the case of a non-British national, for the time within which a notice of appeal had to be served on the CPS.