Kitty Colley specialises exclusively in all areas of crime. She is a highly skilled trial advocate of 25 years experience; prosecuting or defending in all areas of criminal law. She has a thorough, analytical and adaptable approach, and is particularly skilled in the handling of young and vulnerable witnesses and defendants. She is highly personable, putting clients from all backgrounds at ease and has a high reputation as a tenacious advocate. Kitty represents both private and publicly funded clients. She is instructed in “cold case” review cases for both defence and prosecution.
Kitty has attracted wide judicial endorsement and has been described as:
“An advocate of great skill and substantial experience with highly developed inter-personal skills and a deep and detailed knowledge of applicable law.” – Retired circuit judge
Kitty secured the acquittal of professional footballer and former Sunderland player “Cabral”, former team- mate of Adam Johnson, who was charged with rape. (R v T-V 2015). The case attracted high media attention.
Kitty has developed a private client practice in cases of rape, historic sexual offences and cases requiring expert and sensitive handling of client and witnesses. She recently secured the acquittal of a professional man charged with rape and of his step-daughter.
Recent private client instructions include:
- defence of young man with Asperger’s Syndrome charged with penetrative assault of a 3 year old. Through legal application and argument, the prosecution dropped the charges before trial.
- defence of retired police officer charged with historic rape of a civilian whilst on duty
- defence of director of insurance company charged with drunken sexual assault of a work colleague. Kitty secured a conditional discharge.
- Defence of 16 year old son of a police officer charged with rape. The case was dropped following submissions.
Kitty also accepts instructions in all other areas of crime, including offences of violence (murder/section 18, domestic violence); robbery (knife-point and armed); drugs; burglary and conspiracy to burgle; firearms; controlling prostitution; money-laundering; and drugs conspiracies. She handles cases requiring cultural sensitivity.
- Defence of Leeds business man charged with sexual assault of a work colleague
- Defence counsel in Huddersfield CSE ‘grooming’ trials
- Prosecution of man charged with rape of vulnerable and poor children in Kenya.
- Prosecution of non-recent sexual abuse within a family.
Kitty has spoken on BBC Radio 5 Live as a specialist barrister on the subject of false rape allegation.
Primary areas of practise:
- Serious Sexual Offences
- Serious Crime
- Fraud & Financial Crime
Appointments and Memberships
- Grade-4 Prosecutor
- Rape & Serious Sexual Offence Panel
- Approved advocacy trainer/AITC -trained and approved
- Circuit advocacy trainer
- External CPS advocacy assessor
- Criminal Bar Association
- North Eastern Circuit
- Middle Temple
Serious Sexual Offences
Over the past 15 years, Kitty has become one of the most highly rated specialists in cases involving rape and other serious sexual offences. She has both prosecuted and defended serious non-recent cases. Instructions include cases of stranger and familial rape (including at gunpoint or involving extreme violence), as well as recent and non-recent complaints and those of the utmost complexity, sensitivity or public profile. She is very experienced with multi-count indictments, multiple complainant and multiple defendant cases.
Kitty regularly receives instructions from private clients accused of serious or historic sexual offences. She regularly succeeds in securing ‘not guilty’ verdicts for clients facing allegations of rape and sexual abuse.
Kitty has extensive expertise in questioning and dealing with the most vulnerable witnesses and defendants, including those with severe communication difficulties and mental-health issues. In one case, she dealt with an autistic complainant who could only communicate through drawing. She has extensive experience of pre-recorded cross examination of vulnerable witness under the section 28 pilot scheme.
Kitty was selected as one of 12 trainers on the programme of Vulnerable Witness Training of all barristers on the North Eastern circuit in the questioning and handling of vulnerable witnesses.
R v JOC – Non-recent complaint. Rape. Appeal point on presumption of incapacity; whether can be guilty of attempted rape.
R v Perkins– Status of victim personal statements.
R v W – Successful prosecution of foster carers for sexual abuse of 3 vulnerable children in their care.
R v W – rape of a female police officer.
R v RD,SD and PD – Familial historic sexual abuse over 4 decades involving 3 generations, including foster children. Guilty verdicts on all 67 charges. Sentences of over 54 years in total
R v JB – rape of elderly lady in her home: Guilty. Life sentence.
R v M and D – Paedophile ring with 10 victims involving internet grooming and pornography; convicted with life sentences upheld on appeal.
R v D – Rape by a police officer of a vulnerable woman whilst on duty; convicted and imprisoned.
R v J – Gun-point kidnap and rape of a schoolgirl; convicted with life sentence.
R v C – Rape and burglary of an elderly lady, involving substantial previous convictions; convicted with life sentence.
R v N A – Secured conditional discharge for Leeds business man charged with sexual assault of a work colleague. No notification requirements.
R v JS – Defence of student charged with penetrative sexual assault of a 3 year old boy. Secured not guilty verdicts with legal challenge to competence of victim.
R v JH – 16 yr old boy accused of multiple rapes on girlfriend- acquitted.
R v C – multiple violent and sexual offences upon a 3 year old boy, involving complex medical evidence.
R v SL – ex-husband of serving specialist police offcer accused of rape of friend – acquitted.
R v C – Not Guilty: Successful defence of former premiership footballer, charged with rape. The Former Player was acquitted by unanimous verdicts after a 9 day trial. Jury deliberated for 45 minutes.
R v BZ – Keighley grooming case. 14 defendants.
R v B – Non-recent rape of step-daughter; not guilty.
R v D – Non-recent sexual assault of child by a businessman of good character; not guilty.
R v L – Mortgage fraud of £1m, with others; plea and community sentence.
R v P – Stranger rape of 15-year-old; not guilty.
R v M – Rape and violence of ex-partner; not guilty.