Blackfords LLP

Diana Payne


Head of Criminal Defence Team


“Experienced, committed and hugely dedicated to client care”

-Legal 500

Diana heads one of the busiest criminal defence teams in the country which enjoys the highest rating of Category 1 in the Legal 500 for London and the South East. She brings 30 years’ specialist knowledge of criminal proceedings to the representation of her clients.

She has vast experience of a wide range of categories of major crime including sexual offences, violence, fraud, murder and serious drugs offences. Many involve complex investigations and lengthy trials.

Diana frequently has professionals referred to her who find themselves engaged with the criminal justice system.

She has spent much of her professional life as an advocate in court and is a Higher Court Advocate.

Diana has a particular interest in acting for clients in motoring matters, especially those cases whereby diligent representation can make all the difference in avoiding the loss of a licence.

Diana is known for being direct and getting quickly to the key issues. She balances tenacious representation with excellent client rapport. Diana has been winner of Lawyer Monthly Women in Law Awards, in recognition of her expertise in client care, on multiple occasions.

In her role as an Executive Committee Member of the London Criminal Courts Solicitors Association, she has been involved in making representations to the Ministry of Justice, consideration of government policies and making formal responses to consultations on proposed legislation.

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