About Us

ABOUT US

John Munro is a specalist criminal barrister.  He practices in the criminal and regulatory law fields.  This specialisation is important, because it means that John can readily remain up to date in these areas of law, and has expertise in advocacy and drafting techniques. In New Zealand, lawyers are admitted to practice as Barristers and Solicitors.  Generally, if a Barrister and Solicitor wants to specialise in court work they can become a Barrister Sole and join a chambers of barristers specialising in their chosen field.

The Team

John employs, and works closely with, an intermediate and junior barrister, who assist him with minor appearances and the administration of the practice. Collectively, John and his team have approximately 30 years experience protecting individuals charged by the Police or regulatory authorities.  John also works closely with other experts in their field, such as private investigators, psychologists, psychiatrists, interpreters and forensic scientists.  Your defence team will leave no stone unturned.

The Chambers

John and his team are located in Sentinel Chambers, which is a set of criminal barristers’ offices.  John, his team and Sentinel Chambers have an excellent reputation with their peers.

Meet Our Team

John Munro
LLB
Barrister

John specialises in defending serious criminal offences and has over 17 years’ experience both in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.  John stated his career as a prosecutor in Rotorua, before moving to the United Kingdom to practise as a defence lawyer.  After a few years abroad, he returned to New Zealand to be a Crown prosecutor before joining the independent bar as a criminal defence Barrister.  This multi-jurisdictional experience, coupled his experience as both a prosecutor and defence lawyer, means that John has a unique insight which ultimately results in excellent representation for his clients.

Throughout his career, John has prosecuted and defended all manner of charges ranging from simple traffic infringement offences, right through to murder, serious assaults and sexual violations.  However, regardless of the seriousness of the charge, John brings a measured, well-thought-out and meticulous approach to every case.

Before starting his career in the law, John competed in two Commonwealth Games representing New Zealand in swimming.  He then took up a competitive swimming scholarship at the University of South California in Los Angles for three years, before returning to New Zealand where he undertook his legal studies at the University of Auckland.

Outside of work John still enjoys swimming, surfing and running.

Professional Memberships
New Zealand Law Society
Auckland District Law Society
Criminal Bar Association of New Zealand
New Zealand Bar Association

George Burns
LLB(Hons)
Barrister

George completed his law degree with Honours.

He is passionate about criminal defence and committed to achieving the best outcome for clients.

He brings a robust and measured but also compassionate approach to his advocacy and has appeared in the District Court and High Court in judge alone trials, jury trials and appeals in relation to matters including drink driving, serious assaults, and sexual offending.

George hails from the Eastern Bay of Plenty and completed a Bachelor of Business Studies majoring in finance at Massey University in 1993. He subsequently spent a number of years living and working abroad before returning to New Zealand and entering the legal profession.

Outside of work, George enjoys all kinds of sports, loves being among New Zealand’s great outdoors, as well as spending time with family and friends.

Professional Memberships
New Zealand Law Society
Auckland District Law Society
Criminal Bar Association of New Zealand
New Zealand Bar Association

James Olsen
LLB
Barrister

James joined John’s team in 2016 and was admitted to the bar in 2017.

Having excelled academically at law school, James continues to impress in his reading of the law, drafting of legal submissions and by dealing with cases that are beyond his years of experience. James conducts his own cases in the District Court and regularly appears as second counsel with John Munro on difficult jury trials in the District and High Courts and has an integral role in trial strategy.  He has appeared as junior counsel and assisted with conducting research and drafting submissions for significant appeals before the Court of Appeal and in substantial pre-trial issues.

Outside of work, James enjoys unwinding with a good book, getting into the outdoors, as well as spending time with family and friends.

Professional Memberships
New Zealand Law Society
Criminal Bar Association of New Zealand
New Zealand Bar Association