Mark has substantial experience in conducting serious and complex cases for both prosecution and defence. These include commercial fraud, revenue offences, drug trafficking and grave sexual and other violence. He has experience of such issues as covert policing and applications for public interest immunity, confiscation proceedings and corporate liability.
Mark’s practice also includes regulatory law, health and safety, and environmental and pollution cases, as well as planning enforcement.
In the appellate field, Mark has experience of challenges by judicial review to statutory interpretation and to the security categorisation of prisoners, Habeas Corpus, and appeals by way of case stated.
“Well-known for violent crime cases and criminal appeals.”
Legal 500 2020
“He’s good at working in a team and is very pleasant to deal with.”
Chambers UK 2020
“He is very calm, professional and has an excellent courtroom manner.” “Inspires confidence.”
Chambers UK 2019
“Highly recommended for a purview of serious criminal matters.”
Legal 500 2019
“Mark Heywood QC is a very high-standard barrister, both on prosecution and defence.”
Chambers UK 2016
Operation Ply/Destiny (2012-2016)
Multi-million pound commercial mortgage fraud, joined with conspiracy to pervert justice following attempts to coerce a witness into giving false evidence for the defence. (10 defendants). A hugely complex and lengthy investigation and trial with issues, in addition to the conspiracy to pervert, of witness intimidation, feigned mental illnesses and the arrest and seizure of papers (including the briefs of 2 defence counsel in the trial) from a solicitor representing one of the defendants. Associated POCA proceedings.
5th December 2016
Prosecution of a series of indictments generated by the activities of an organised crime gang in the West Midlands. Crackle 1: (5 defendants.) Conspiracies to obtain firearms and to rob cash in transit vans. (Due to conclude October 2017). Crackle 2: (8 defendants.) Conspiracy to supply kilos of almost completely pure cocaine. (Awaiting sentence) Crackle 3: (2 defendants.) Conspiracy to supply heroin. (Awaiting sentence). Legal issues include extensive covert surveillance and admission of evidence of involvement in prior armed robberies.
21st November 2016
Successful prosecution of a man posing as an Islamic holy man who repeatedly raped a Muslim woman under the pretence of carrying out a healing ritual to purify her troubled marriage and also fraudulently obtained 6,000 from her. Instructed from pre-charge stage to advise on the issues raised in the trial, including the establishment of statutory presumptions against consent and vitiation of consent post R (applic. of ‘F’) v DPP and ‘A’  and Assange v Swedish prosecution Authority .
19th September 2016
Murder arising from a dispute over money between two co-workers and tenants of a hostel. A largely circumstantial case, reliant in large part on interpretation of CCTV and forensic evidence to trace the course of the violence. Retrial due to be heard May 2017.
9th May 2016
Successful prosecution of a soldier, invalided from service due to wounds sustained on active service, for a series of rapes and attempted rapes of different women around the country. The case involved expert evidence from 5 expert witnesses concerning issues of psycopathy, sleep disorder, post-traumatic stress and dissociative disorders, and bad character evidence relating to earlier allegations, not pursued at the time in Scotland.
23rd February 2016
Successful defence of the stepfather in the intensely publicised murder trial which followed the death of 21-month-old Ayeeshia-Jayne Smith, who died as a result of stamping injuries so severe as to equate to a car crash. Cutthroat defence against the child’s mother. Pathology evidence included evidence of earlier, healed, brain injury relevant as well as evidence of an ongoing pattern of assaults for which one or other parent had to be liable.
Todd and Others
11th January 2016
Successful prosecution of former employees of a residential care home for vulnerable children in the 1980-90s for offences of sexual and physical assaults on children in local authority care. The victims had a number of different issues of credibility to be managed by careful pre-trial meetings and planning, including mental health issues or records of differing degrees of dishonesty, substance abuse and violence. Legal issues involved admission of evidence of a sexual relationship formed between one defendant and a younger girl he fostered from care, known and concealed by another defendant.
9th January 2016
Successful prosecution the defendant for the attempted murder of his partner’s lover and shortly thereafter, the murder of his partner herself. The case relied on interpretation of voice and text calls, coupled with cell-site analysis and CCTV together with disputed DNA evidence. A further complicating factor was that for months, it had been the deceased’s lover who had been charged with her murder, a fact that the defendant took full advantage of in his own defence.
16th November 2015
Defence of young Afghan immigrant with an established history of revelling in and seeking out extreme violence, for the unprovoked murder and attempted murder of two passers by on a city centre street. Legal issues included the admissibility of admissions made under compulsion in the course of his compliance with the intervention programmes mandated by the Youth Justice Board under an earlier Referral order.
7th October 2015
Murder in the course of a pre-arranged knife fight in broad daylight on a busy city centre street, the culmination of ongoing knife violence between the two protagonists. The defendant himself suffered nearly fatal injuries at the hands of the deceased.
10th August 2015
Manslaughter in course of a confrontation in the street.
Rosinke and Others
15th June 2015
Murder of the occupant of a multi-occupied house. Unusually complex pathology and neuropathology evidence.
2nd February 2015
Series of historic rapes, other sexual offences and taking of indecent images by the defendant against 5 of his natural daughters and stepdaughters. Legal issues included Autrefois Acquit and the admissibility of evidence arising from a previously stayed indictment.
R v Bradbury
Investment company fraud, involving contraventions of the Financial Services Act.
R v Crossett and others
Corruption and the fraudulent manipulation of tendering system for the award of contracts for new works and maintenance services to the Ministry of Defence estate at RAF Stafford.
R v Frost and others
Conspiracy to commit armed robberies. In the course of one of the robberies, one of the robbers was killed by his victim.
R v Nagra and Lyness
Organised, large-scale theft of cheques from the offices of blue-chip companies. Payees forged, and proceeds laundered throughout the country.
R v Begum and others
Banking fraud: defendants raised fraudulent loans, using the proceeds as collateral for further borrowing. The proceeds were then removed from the country.
R v Ryan and Ryan
Torture of mentally inadequate self professed Satanist by a group of juveniles whose own histories of abuse led them to the belief that their victim was a paedophile.
Mark is a member of the Criminal Bar Association