Criminal defence

Coodes specialist Criminal Defence team is widely regarded as one of the best in Cornwall and Devon. Our highly experienced solicitors are also Higher Court Advocates who specialise in criminal defence work, providing our clients with comprehensive representation across all types of crime.

We have successfully acted for people charged in some of the most high-profile, serious criminal cases in the region, including murder, kidnapping, rape, armed robbery, sexual assaults and large-scale fraud. Equally, on a daily basis, we successfully represent those appearing in the Magistrates’ Court and those needing representation at the Police Station.

Our criminal defence lawyers have the skills and expertise to help you through every stage of the criminal legal process. We recognise that each case is unique and will handle your case as such, providing you with expert and skilled representation to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your individual case.

Our criminal defence experts handle all aspects of criminal defence work, from interviews under caution at the police station, pre-charge negotiations with the police, non-police interviews under caution, through to any subsequent proceedings at the Magistrates’ Court, Crown Court and Court of Appeal.

We can support you with every aspect of your case, including:

  • not guilty pleas through to trial
  • guilty pleas through to sentence
  • bail applications
  • legal arguments
  • exceptional hardship arguments
  • abuse of process arguments

As your defence lawyers, we will challenge every element of the prosecution case where possible to secure the best possible outcome for you.

We are both robust and sensitive in our representation and defence of all our clients, and whatever the charge, believing that everybody is entitled to a skilful and professional defence. Where appropriate, we will instruct third-party specialists such as forensic experts or suitably skilled barristers with whom we have worked for many years, to assist with your defence.

We cover all aspects of criminal defence work including:

  • Murder and manslaughter
  • Sexual offences
  • Violent offences
  • Drug offences
  • Dishonesty offences, including but not exclusively, robbery, theft and burglary
  • Motoring offences
  • Business crime and fraud
  • Confiscation applications and asset freezing orders

You are entitled to high-quality professional legal representation and at Coodes we take that right very seriously. We are committed to the provision of criminal legal aid defence work and private criminal defence work where legal aid is not available to you.

We cover all courts in Devon and Cornwall, particularly the Magistrates’ Courts in Plymouth, Bodmin and Truro, but we are also able to arrange representation for you nationally if you have been summonsed or charged to appear out of the local area.

We hold a Legal Services Commission Criminal Contract which enables us to carry out work under the legal aid scheme.

If you are not eligible for legal aid, we will be able to offer you representation on a guaranteed fixed-fee basis so you know exactly what your fees are in advance, with no hidden charges.

Our approach

Whatever stage of the criminal process your case has reached, we can help.

The first point of contact might be at the police station, whether you have requested us by name, or asked for the duty solicitor. Our priority at that early stage will be to help you understand the process, discuss the evidence with you and consider with you the best way to deal with your case.

Or, you may come to us following receipt of a postal requisition to attend the Magistrates’ Court, or you have been charged at the police station to attend the Magistrates’ Court. You might also approach us when you first have to attend the Crown Court. Whatever the circumstances, we will apply the same technical scrutiny to your case at whichever stage you approach us.

It is a general principle of English criminal law that a person is innocent until proven guilty. This means that it is the job of the prosecution to prove that you have committed the criminal offence you are charged with. Neither you, as the person charged, nor your defence team, are required to prove your innocence.

We will examine your case in minute detail to identify any flaw in the prosecution evidence and explore all opportunities to avoid a conviction or to reduce your sentence to the minimum possible.

More than 90% of our criminal defence clients tell us they are “very satisfied” with our overall level of service and more than 95% of our clients felt that the outcome of their case was better, or the same as, we had advised them it was likely to be.

Should your case require us to instruct a barrister or forensic expert we have an extensive network of barristers’ chambers and forensic experts that we have worked with over the years and will select the most appropriate professionals to support your individual case.


Chris Andrews

Head of Criminal Defence

Client Testimonials

Very grateful for excellent legal representation by Lucy Bryant, very sensitive in the way I was treated with regards to my health problems, would recommend for anyone else with disabilities.


I've recommended you to various people over the years. Was recommended to Coodes over 20 years ago.


Top drawer - Thank you to all. I have requested Coodes representation for years.


Coodes do a brilliant job. I would recommend them to anyone.


I've got nothing but praise for Coodes. So yeah Coodes are spot on.


I was very impressed with the conduct of my case. My solicitor was amazing in every single way, understanding, articulate and crystal clear with advice.


The service was first class. Thank you.


Coodes solicitors done a very good job for me and I would be pleased to send other people to Coodes.


I was made to feel like I was important and you really helped me with the situation I was in.


Good solicitors are hard to find and you were great. Thank you for your help.


I have always used Coodes and have never been disappointed.


In my situation your solicitor was impeccable. Your representative Lucy was very professional. There was no delay when I contacted your office.


First class. I will always and have recommended people to Coodes for outstanding advice.


My mum told me years ago and I've been with Coodes for years, the best ever company. Just keep doing what you do, the best company I've been with.


News & Events

Key contact

Chris Andrews

Head of Criminal Defence

Get in touch

Call us on 0800 328 3282, or complete the form below and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

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