Maria Karaiskos KC

Year of Call: 2000
Year of Silk: 2023

Maria was appointed King’s Counsel in 2023. She is the first female silk, and the first home-grown silk, in the history of Church Court Chambers.

Maria prosecutes and defends the most serious, sensitive, and complex of criminal offences. Her practice includes murders, large-scale frauds and confiscation proceedings, historic rapes, child abuse and high-profile sexual offences, road traffic fatalities, multi-handed drug conspiracies and international importations.

Prosecuting and defending gives Maria a comprehensive and tactical viewpoint on every case she is involved in.

She is instructed regularly on a private basis to defend complex sexual offences due to her considerable level of expertise in this area.

Maria is public access accredited and accepts direct instructions from members of the public:

Maria’s practice also includes prosecuting and defending regulatory crime: environmental offences, health and safety breaches by corporations, local authority prosecutions and breaches of High Court injunctions.

Maria is well known for her meticulous preparation, fearless approach to each case and persuasive style in Court. She has excellent legal skills, intelligent case planning and full commitment to each case she undertakes. She is an excellent communicator who holds the confidence of each client and the Court.

When she is not prosecuting or defending cases, Maria sits as a Judge in the Crown Court [a Recorder] and in the Magistrates Court [a Deputy District Judge].

Notable Cases

  • R v MW et al (2023)

    Internal multi-million-pound fraudulent loan scheme at Natwest

  • R v MK (2018-2023)

    Housing fraud, unlawful sub-letting

  • R v AS (2023)

    Rapes on 4-year-old, infecting with gonorrhea

  • R v AG (2023)

    Historic rapes by 14-year-old boy

  • R v AP (2023)

    Historic rapes in family setting

  • R v FH (2023)

    Fatal assault on mother by son

  • R v DF (2023)

    One-punch manslaughter

  • R v NA et al (2022-2023)

    Cryptocurrency, large-scale, multi-handed drug importation

  • R v JP (2022)

    Historic rapes over sustained period of time of 4-8 year olds

  • R v DW (2022)

    Historic rape of 8-year-old boy

  • R v ME (2022)

    Sexual abuse in care home by carer

  • R v KH et al (2022)

    Large-scale drugs supply, multi-handed

  • R v SS (2022)

    Internal abuse of position of trust at Barclays

  • R v EH (2022)

    Multi-handed money laundering of pensioner

  • R v CA et al (2022)

    Perverting the course of justice, multi-handed conspiracy

  • R v LC (2022)

    Death by dangerous driving

  • R v AC (2022)

    Rape at University Halls of Residence

  • R v IK (2021/22)

    Stabbing outside school in Luton

  • R v KM (2021)

    Sexual abuse by bogus gynecologist on multiple women

  • R v DP et al (2021)

    Multi-million-pound fraud of jade and ivory auctioned at Bonhams

  • R v MH et al (2021)

    Multi-handed stabbing at Cross Harbour DLR station

  • R v MH et al (2020-2021)

    Large-scale abuse of trust by employees at Great Western Railway

  • R v MD et al (2020)

    Multi-handed stabbing on bus at Stratford

  • R v MS (2020)

    International multi-million money laundering

  • R v DC (2020)

    Stabbing by wife on husband

  • R v M Ltd (2019-2023)

    Personal injury on construction site

  • R v RW (2019-2023)

    Grenfell Enquiry, advisory

  • R v AH (2019)

    Fatal piercing of eye at Finsbury Park café

  • R v SM (2019)

    Health and safety breaches on construction site

  • R v MM et al (2019)

    One-punch multi-handed manslaughter at Kingsbury station

  • R v A Ltd (2018)

    Environmental law breaches/Enforcement Undertaking EU Forms: water discharge, recycling packaging

  • R v CS (2018)

    Double shooting break-in, attempted shooting of police in Hastings

Memberships and Appointments


King’s Counsel (2023)

Recorder, Crown Court (2018, North-East Circuit, London and South-East Circuit)

Deputy District Judge, Magistrates Court (2017, London and South-East Circuit)

CPS Rasso and Grade 4 prosecutor

External Advocacy Assessor to the CPS

Accredited advocacy trainer for pupils and in-house advocates

Memberships and Scholarships

ARDL: Association of Regulatory and Disciplinary Lawyers
South-East Circuit

Criminal Bar Association

Herts and Beds Bar Mess

Middle Temple Scholar: Harold G. Fox and Harmsworth Awards


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