Black Box Experts
Black Box Research & Consultancy
Since completing the National Crime Agency Drug Trafficking Expert Evidence course in 2010, Darrell has compiled and quality assured over 2,000 Expert Witness statements.
In January 2016 he became the first full time Drug Expert Witness Officer within the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) and took a leading role in setting up the MPS dedicated Drug Expert Witness Unit. This involved the recruitment of officers, the development of a training and mentoring program, continued personal development, planning external development seminars, quality assurance of expert reports and setting procedures to collate identifiable prices of drugs being offered within London.
Darrell was recently awarded a Masters in Criminology at the University of West London.
Dr Craig Barlow
Dr Craig Barlow is a Criminologist and Independent Consultant in Forensic Social Work. Over the past 30 years he has been involved in safeguarding children and vulnerable adults and the assessment and management of violent and sexual offenders in both secure forensic and community settings. He has been an honorary fellow and part-time lecturer in the Criminology and Sociology programme and the MA Human Trafficking at St. Mary’s since 2019. He is currently one of the research team on the AHRC/MSPEC funded project – full title and link.
Craig has many years’ experience of researching organised and networked abuse and exploitation of children and vulnerable adults, he has acted as an expert adviser to Police and Prosecutors in cases of trafficking and modern slavery since 2014. His doctoral research developed a new theoretical model for understanding, describing, and explaining Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE) which he continues to develop to address other contexts for modern slavery.
From his direct work as a practitioner and his academic research, he has developed the Systemic investigation, Protection and Prosecution Strategies (SIPPS) approach to assist safeguarding agencies, law enforcement and both civil and criminal justice practitioners safeguard victims and pursue, disrupt, and prosecute perpetrators.
Craig regularly provides expert evidence to the criminal and family courts but continues to pursue his research interests with the Wilberforce Institute (University of Hull) and The Bakhita Centre at St Mary’s University, Twickenham. He lectures on the subject of modern slavery throughout the country and abroad and is engaged as a consultant by a number of organisations including law enforcement statutory services, governing bodies and NGOs.
Prosecutor Caroline Haughey KC has said of Craig “I have relied on Dr Barlow’s expertise for nearly 10 years.
Operation FORT is the largest trafficking /labour exploitation case in Europe with an excess of 300 victims a very large number of whom had profound mental health problems (one of the reasons they were exploited). Deciding who to rely on as witnesses was critical to the case and his analysis of the supporting material on the mental health, learning needs and vulnerability of each of my complainants was vital in the shaping of the trial…His review then critically analysed the credibility (the key factor) of each complainant and the means by which we would achieve their best evidence taking into account the new guidance from the advocacy gateway as well as identifying further lines of enquiry that would assist in corroborating their account…His assistance was intrinsic to the successful prosecution of the case.”