Elyas is a former Sweet and Maxwell Law Prize Winner (London) and Gooderson Memorial Award Winner (University of Cambridge). He has been a member of chambers since his pupillage in 1991.
After a varied common law practice, Elyas now specialises in all aspects of criminal defence work including offences of the utmost gravity.
Elyas is fluent in Urdu and Gujerati and is particularly well versed in issues / cases concerning aspects of the Islamic Faith.
After a broad practice (including personal injury, family and employment) Elyas now specialises in Crime.
Special experience of dealing with cases bearing an Islamic / Muslim perspective.
Includes both prosecution and defence work.
Led by Mr Simon Myerson QC. The Defendant Khan faced a charge of murder. The Defendant’s wife his first cousin arrived in the UK in December 2005 following a traditional arranged marriage. By May 2006 she had been found dead at the family home. The initial post mortem and subsequent medical evidence had confirmed that the deceased had been the victim of repeated episodes of serious violence. At the time of her death almost every rib in her body was or had been recently fractured. In short she had died because her body and vital organs could not take any more! At his trial the Defendant denied responsibility for the injuries inflicted upon his wife claiming she had been possessed by evil spirits and he was forced to defend himself against her spirit fuelled attacks.
Led by Mr Simon Myerson QC. D charged with attempted murder plus an array of serious firearms offences following an incident in the Leeds area during which Atkinson discharged his considerable arsenal of weaponry directly at Police Officers. Both uniformed as well as firearms officers had been fired at. The incident came to an end when one of the firearms officers shot at and injured the Defendant’s shooting arm. The case raised obvious and sensitive issues of great public and police moment. The case was tried in Leeds by Mr Justice Tugenhadt.
Operation Talon involving the theft & subsequent “quick” sale of high value prestige motor cars (value in excess of a million pounds) stolen in Hanoi Burglaries within the West Yorkshire area. Acted as sole counsel for the lead Defendant Sheikh in circumstances where the prosecution (led by Adrian Waterman QC) and all other 13 Defendants were represented by 2 Counsel. I carried and discharged a heavy burden in relation to a Defendant involved in a serious and complicated case which also included within it significant supplies of Class A Drugs and Firearms to undercover police officers. During the course of the proceedings, the learned trial judge HH Judge Kershaw QC applauded what she described as the “considerable effort and hard-work” on the part of Sheikh’s counsel which had gone into preparing his basis of plea document.
Bradford case targeting wholesale suppliers of class A drugs into the Bradford, Keighley & Oldham areas. Acted as leading junior for a Defendant who was just 15 at the time of the offences and who had repeatedly been used by others to travel from Keighley to Bradford for the purposes of transporting consignments of drugs. When the Defendant was arrested on one such mission he was dressed in his school uniform which was being used by the others as an essential part of his cover.
Junior representing an Iraqi Kurdish defendant who was charged with 13 others from the same ethnic community following serious street disorder and violence (knives/baseball bats deployed against one another and 1 victim deliberately run over causing life-long brain damage and serious physical disability) between the Kurdish and indigenous white communities in the Ravensthorpe area of Dewsbury. The entire case turned against the Defendant I represented on the correctness of one or more identifications of him. After a six week trial presided over by HH Judge McCallum a defence submission of no case to answer was upheld at the close of the prosecution case.
Led by Tom Bayliss QC. Charges of conspiracy to murder stemming from an execution style shooting in the Leeds area and subsequent serious attempts by those involved also by “shooting” to pervert the course of justice by preventing key witnesses from coming to court to give evidence.
Lead junior defending Hussain who was involved in the post–theft organisation, distribution and break up into vehicle parts of high value motor cars stolen within the Bradford area. The Defendants fronted their criminal enterprise from what was on the surface a very professionally run car dismantlers business in Bradford. Significant “cut throat” arguments as to culpability between the Defendants involved arose during the course of the entire case.
Instructed on behalf of a Defendant allegedly involved in the gang rape of a fellow asylum seeker.
Led junior. Murder trial arising out of the recent tit for tat gang killings (Dec/Feb 2001) in the Keighley area. The defendant was acquitted of all charges. He was also one of the lead participants in the Bradford riots for which role he was duly sentenced.
Led junior. Manslaughter trial arising out of heroin addicts injecting one another. Acquitted after a retrial.