§ Mr. Dismore
To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs if he will list the QCs who received the highest overall payments(a) from the Community Legal Service budget and (b) from the Criminal Defence Service budget in 2002–03. 
§ Mr. Lammy
[pursuant to his reply, 26 January 2004]: I said in my previous answer that James Sturman was the QC who received the highest total payments from the Criminal Defence Service in 2002–03. This answer failed to take into account payments made under Very High Cost Case Contracts administered separately by the Legal Services Commission. The highest total payments were in fact made to John Rees who received in the region of £664,000. I apologise for this error.
Care should be taken not to misinterpret these payments as an indication of annual earnings for work carried out in the year for the following reasons:
- 1. Payments made during any financial year will include payments or work carried out before the start of the year, and will include payments for cases, which started and concluded over several years.
- 2. Payments received during any financial year do not necessarily mean that they were paid for work carried out at the rank of QC
- 3. Barristers may be paid directly by an instructing solicitor as part a solicitors disbursement.
- 4. The figures quoted above are gross payments and are inclusive of VAT, and may include payments on account where applicable as well as travel and hotel expenses incurred.