JOHN HALEWOOD-DODD is the managing director and a practising solicitor. He joined Douglas Clift & Co as a trainee in 1994 before his admission as a solicitor in 1996. He has specialised in criminal law for his entire career building up the department as it was at Douglas Clift & Co into the company it now is. John has dealt with many varied cases from allegations of terrorism dealt with at the Old Bailey to minor road traffic offences. His continued passion for assisting those accused of allegations remains the driving force of the company.
REBECCA SEYMOUR initially joined the team as a legal clerk. On recognising her potential we supported her through her post graduate studies and offered her a training contract. Whilst qualifying she obtained accreditation as a police station representative. Although one of the younger solicitors in our team, she has already excelled at trials.
DARREN HALSTED has been a member of the team since 2002, having qualified in 1993 and working at another practice as a partner in the crime department. He has worked solely in criminal defence for over 15 years acquiring extensive experience in all types of criminal cases, including defending road traffic cases, taxi law allegations and ASBOs. He is one of our more experienced solicitors and has particular expertise in defending more complex trials at which has a proven record of success.
DANIEL SPENCER joined the LHD team as a trainee solicitor in 2006 and remained with the company after he qualified. He subsequently gained accreditation as both a Court and Police Station Duty Solicitor. Daniel has solely specialised in Criminal Defence work for over 10 years having previously worked as a paralegal in the Greater Manchester and Preston areas. He has a vast experience of dealing with a wide range of cases from murder and rape to shoplifting and motoring offences.
SOPHIE GILLESPIE is a solicitor who initially joined us in 2010 to gain experience whilst studying. She originally came as a legal clerk and became an accredited police station representative before being offered a training contract with the firm. Sophie uses her knowledge of case law and experience of legal research in her preparation of our cases, when not in the office obtaining instructions from clients she is attending the police station to represent them.
TONY McCRINK joined the firm in 2001 and quickly became a trusted member of LHD’s case preparation team. He is the senior legal clerk in the Magistrates’ Court department and is an accredited police station representative. He has many years of experience dealing with a wide variety of cases both in the police station and in preparing cases for court.
PAUL CLARKE is the senior legal clerk in the LHD Crown Court department. He joined us in 2003 but has over 20 years of experience in criminal defence work. His knowledge of local practice and practitioners at every level is extremely beneficial. He has overseen the successful defence of serious matters such as murder, complex proceeds of crime applications and terrorism.
EILEEN WALTON has had a variety of career paths, even working abroad at one stage. She brings this life experience to her position as a Crown Court clerk and has been with LHD since 2006. She consistently receives high praise from clients for her calming manner at a stressful time of their lives.