JON TURNER QC
QC MA (Cantab), LLM (Harvard)
CALL DATE: 1988 SILK: 2006
"Jon Turner QC is lauded as "an incisive, commercially focused and adaptable team player" who hoovers up much of the best work in the market" (Chambers, 2011). He is the first ranked silk in The Legal 500's European and Competition category and a Chambers "Star Performer": "Turner 'combines approachability with prodigious intellect and a willingness to get stuck in'. Turner's 'ability both to be part of, and ultimately, to lead a team into court' made him 'one of the foremost QCs at the competition Bar'. Chambers 2009 states: "Jon Turner QC is "a blessed barrister," according to clients. As well as being "extremely bright and brilliant at recalling evidence," he enjoys the untrammelled respect of both peers and clients".
Jon is one of the finest advocates in Competition, EU, and Telecoms/Utilities law, as well as Commercial, Public, and Environmental law. The "ferociously bright" (Legal 500, 2013) Jon Turner QC is admired for his "incredible analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of a case, as well as his powerful cross-examination skills" (Chambers, 2010), and as a "courtroom king who can dance round opponents" (Chambers, 2011). He is commended as being "an excellent performer under pressure" and "a terrific lawyer, and very easy to work with" (Legal 500, 2013). Jon handles cases regularly in the appellate courts as well as at first instance, and is a first choice for advocacy in the European Courts.
Jon is widely regarded as a pre-eminent advocate in the field of EU/Competition law. He stands at the pinnacle of the legal directories' rankings for EU/Competition law, and is a Chambers and Partners "Star Performer". Before taking silk, Jon was the Standing Counsel to the Office of Fair Trading for nine years, and honed his trial strategy and cross-examination skills in a number of the OFT's heaviest court cases (including the replica football shirts cartel case in the Competition Appeal Tribunal, and the Over-The-Counter Medicaments trial in the Restrictive Practices Court). He was praised for his "encyclopaedic knowledge of the law and unparalleled trial skills."
Jon's practice in silk has involved leading teams in some of the largest defence cases on abuse of dominance before the regulator and/or on appeal (such as the National Grid metering case, and Reckitt Benckiser's case in the pharma sector), as well as anti-competitive collusion cases for clients across a wide span of sectors, from the drugs to the film/media industry. He has handled cases on the interplay between IP and competition law, including FRAND disputes concerning standard-setting organisations. In recent years, he has acted in some of the cutting-edge private actions for damages arising from international cartel and abuse cases, including the pending litigation on the worldwide gas insulated switchgear cartel (on the claimant side), the multi-party air cargo case (on the defence side), and the recent challenges to Google's use of its search engine. He has acted in a series of major Court of Appeal cases, including Deutsche Bahn (2012), KME (2012), and National Grid (French Blocking Statute) (2013). He also argues cases before the European Courts, acting for the United Kingdom in 2013 in the appeal by MasterCard against the European Commission's decision that its cross-border payment system involves anti-competitive collusion.
Jon is one of the Bar's foremost litigators in EU law, handling cases in the European Courts and in the UK. As junior Treasury Counsel, he handled cases in areas as diverse as environmental law and criminal justice in the Court of Justice. His landmark victories included Novartis (an intellectual property case concerning the validity of supplemental protection certificates in the pharma industry), and Roquette Freres (concerning the powers of the European Commission in their "search and seizure" activities in dawn raids. In silk, he has acted in a wide variety of cases, including the recent attack on the EU's Carbon Trading Scheme in the aviation sector (2011), where he successfully resisted the challenge by US airlines based on public international law norms to the legality of the environmental measure, and where another party described his performance as "spectacular". He was nominated for the Bar Pro Bono award of the year in view of his outstanding work in the case. He also acted for the United Kingdom in the EU General Court (2012) and Court of Justice (2013) in the appeal mounted by MasterCard to the European Commission's decision that its cross-border payment card system had anti-competitive elements (the "interchange fee"). In 2007, Jon was instrumental in the defence of another EU-wide law, the "Roaming Regulation" in the telecommunications field, against an attack on its validity by a coalition of telecommunications companies.
JUDICIAL REVIEW & ENVIRONMENTAL LAW
Jon Turner QC has a very strong niche practice in environmental law, particularly in judicial review cases and cases raising EU and international law issues. Chambers (2013) reports that he is: "a popular brief for litigious matters in the environmental arena and counts Greenpeace and the Environment Agency amongst his many clients. Clients say that he is a superb barrister who is especially good on the more complex cases, particularly those with an EU angle to them." Similarly, Chambers (2010) has reported: "Jon Turner QC is widely admired for his direct approach and fantastic regulatory practice, and has recently acted in significant judicial reviews in the environmental sector." Legal 500 (2008) commented that: "he can turn a reasonable case into a really strong argument".
He has acted as lead advocate in a series of major environmental judicial review cases in the High Court, the Court of Appeal, and in the European Courts, on matters extending from habitats protection for dolphins in the English Channel to the international CITES convention, and the EU regime on pollution control. In 2010 and 2011, he acted for a group of environmental organisations in a judicial review challenge to the EU Carbon Trading regime as it applied to international aviation, which led to a landmark judgment of the European Court of Justice on the interface between public international law norms and European freedom to legislate on matters affecting third countries (Case 366/11, Air Transport Association of America v. Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change). He has also acted in numerous judicial reviews relating to the EU and UK landfill and waste law rules, and the groundwater protection regime.
PUBLIC AND ADMINISTRATIVE LAW
Jon Turner QC is recommended in Chambers & Partners for his excellent practice in judicial review and public law, where he focuses on three main areas: commercial and regulatory judicial reviews; environmental law, and more generally in cases raising EU law issues. Legal 500 (2012) reported under Public & Administrative Law that he is widely seen as "a man of fabulous intellect, who always offers great support to those that instruct him".
He acts for companies and public bodies in judicial reviews of decisions by the economic and regulatory bodies, such as (in 2013): Everything Everywhere's judicial review of the Competition Commission's decision on mobile call termination charges in the Competition Appeal Tribunal and the Court of Appeal in ( EWCA Civ 154, where the Court noted his skill as an advocate); on behalf of Global Radio in its challenge to the Competition Commission's decision that its merger in the radio sector should be partly dismantled; and on behalf of the water regulator, Ofwat, in the challenge mounted by a company to a decision based on economic principles under the Water Industry Act.
He has acted in a series of major environmental judicial review cases, on matters extending from habitats protection for dolphins in the English Channel to the international CITES convention, and the EU regime on pollution control. In 2010 and 2011, he acted for a group of environmental organisations in a judicial review challenge to the EU Carbon Trading regime as it applied to international aviation, which led to a landmark judgment of the European Court of Justice on the interface between public international law norms and European freedom to legislate on matters affecting third countries (Case 366/11, Air Transport Association of America v. Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change).
TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND UTILITIES REGULATION
Jon is one of the elite advocates in telecommunications/regulatory law, combining top flight advocacy and analytical skills with excellent strategy and team work. He is ranked in the first band by Chambers & Partners (2013), which describes him as "roundly regarded as one of the best competition and regulated utilities counsel in the land. Solicitors like him as "he shows you the light in a case and directs you down the path that is best for you." He also "adds an aura of calm and control to any situation," which proves highly reassuring to those who instruct him". In Chambers 2012, a commentator reported: "[He] has got the lot - he's a brilliant advocate, and really gets to grips with the case."
He acts for companies at every level, including in the Competition Commission, the Competition Appeal Tribunal, the Administrative Court (in judicial reviews), and the Court of Appeal. In 2012/13 he acted for Everything Everywhere in their challenge to termination rate controls imposed by Ofcom. In 2012, he secured a landmark victory in the Court of Appeal on a joint instruction by Everything Everywhere, Three and Vodafone against a CAT decision concerning Ofcom's remit in deciding interconnection disputes among telecoms operators. In 2010, he acted for Carphone Warehouse in one of the largest pieces of telecommunications litigation that year, concerning price controls over the charges for BT's copper wire telephone and broadband products. In 2008-10 he acted in the first wave of challenges to Ofcom's mobile price controls, involving expert cross-examination in the Tribunal, ending with a key victory in the Court of Appeal on the powers of the CAT when overturning regulatory price controls. In 2013, Jon also represented the water regulator, Ofwat, in the Administrative Court judicial review attack on a "bulk supply" determination in favour of Albion Water.
- Trinity College, Cambridge: M.A. (law). Harvard Law School, Mass. USA. LLM
- ACFI Prize for achieving first place in professional bar examinations in EC law
- Standing Counsel to the Office of Fair Trading from 1997 to 2006
- Junior Counsel to the Crown (A Panel) from 2002 until taking silk
- Attorney-at-law at the New York Bar
- Languages: Good French; working German
Contributor to Bellamy and Child's Common Market Law of Competition, 4th edn. and supplement (Chapter on Civil Remedies); contributor to supplement to Bellamy and Child's Common Market Law of Competition, 3rd edn. (Chapters on Article 86, Enforcement and Procedure, Vertical Agreements affecting Distribution and Supply).
Regular speaker at competition law, human rights, public law and utilities conferences
Jon was nominated as EU/Competition Silk of the Year 2012 by Chambers and Partners.
Jon won the "Junior of the Year" award in the Competition/EU section at the Chambers Bar Awards 2006, an award for which he was nominated the year before. They noted: "Jon Turner has amassed vast experience as senior standing counsel to the Director General of Fair Trading and he also represents clients in private competition law actions. He has regularly appeared before the CAT in highly visible matters such as the recent MasterCard litigation. Commentators highly praise his encyclopaedic knowledge of the law and unparalleled trial skills."
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