For ten years before he took Silk, Mayes QC was Standing Counsel to the Inland Revenue but is no mere Government ‘gamekeeper’ turned ace courtroom poacher.

Mayes QC has always been happy to work both sides of the street and has continued to accept instructions from taxpayers.

This did not always endear him to the Revenue which once protested about it to the Attorney General. The Attorney General endorsed Mayes' stance, pointing out to HMRC that it was

“in the best traditions of the Bar that this man's specialist skills should be available to all”.

Mayes QC not only helped HMRC to clean up a number of frauds and over-ambitious avoidance schemes, he also negotiates settlements for taxpayers ranging from film stars to politicians, from pop stars to Princes.

When HMRC tried to sluice out the Augean stables of the Premier League, Mayes QC was instructed by clubs, owners and players

When an investigation was launched into the bloodstock industry, he was instructed for owners and jockeys. Hence a Newmarket insider's designation of Ian as

expensive Brief, who can make the impossible credible and the unlikely a racing certainty’.

When the Revenue challenged covenanted fees schemes at religious schools, Ian was retained for the headmaster of Carmel College who, after the problem had been solved, gave an interview to the 'Jewish Chronicle':

“above all, I am grateful to my gentile barrister,
Ian Mayes, who stood by me throughout”.