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  1. International crime and extradition – Leading sets
  2. International crime and extradition – Leading silks
  3. International crime and extradition – Leading juniors

International crime and extradition – Leading silks

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International crime and extradition – Leading juniors

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    • Michelle Butler - Matrix Chambers β€˜She has a strong track record in international tribunal cases.’
    • Matthew Butt - Three Raymond Buildings β€˜Relentless in the pursuit of his clients’ best interests.’
    • Peter Caldwell - Drystone Chambers β€˜An intelligent, tactically astute and decisive advocate, who impresses with his ability to master complex arguments’
    • Clair Dobbin - Three Raymond Buildings β€˜Instructed by the government legal department and requested persons in challenging cases.’
    • Iain Edwards - 1MCB β€˜An exceptionally accomplished practitioner in the field, who genuinely thrives on his feet in the courtroom.’
    • Aidan Ellis - Temple Garden Chambers β€˜He advises international tribunal defendants.’
    • Malcolm Hawkes - Doughty Street Chambers β€˜His workload includes a number of Russian and American cases.’
    • Nicholas Hearn - Furnival Chambers β€˜A very capable and effective advocate.’
    • Gillian Higgins - 9 Bedford Row β€˜A veteran of International Criminal Court prosecutions.’
    • Joe Holmes - 9 Bedford Row β€˜He has an encyclopaedic knowledge of international criminal law and his advocacy is very persuasive.’
    • Ben Keith - 5 St Andrews Hill β€˜A well-respected figure, who is popular with clients and appreciated for his clear and straightforward advice.’
    • Aaron Watkins - Matrix Chambers β€˜A star of the extradition world – bright, responsive and capable of producing superb skeleton arguments.’
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This section encompasses extradition and European Arrest Warrant cases for both requesting governments and defendants and other cross-border criminal procedure matters such as Interpol red notices, as well as the significantly rarer work concerning offences under international criminal law, both before international tribunals and the British courts. It does not cover sanctions work, which is covered in business and regulatory crime, or more general criminal matters with cross-border elements. It also does not cover appeals to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council regarding cases within the ambit of general crime. That said, many barristers are likely to have practices that do not neatly fit within these boxes and so may be ranked in more than one practice area.

Doughty Street Chambers handles both international criminal law work and leading extradition cases. Edward Fitzgerald CBE QC represented the appellant in the European Court of Human Rights case Harkins v United Kingdom, who argued that extradition to Florida to face trial for murder, punishable only by life imprisonment without parole, would constitute a violation of article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR)’ prohibition on torture. Steven Powles acted for Aime Kilolo Musamba, a lawyer accused of procuring false evidence before the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Prosecutor v Bemba case.

At Matrix Chambers, β€˜counsel are always of an excellent standard’. Michelle Butler advised the Libyan government on its proposed trials of Saif al-Islam Gaddafi (son of Colonel Gaddafi) and Abdullah Senussi, while Mark Summers QC successfully represented the US government, which received Navinder Singh Sarao, also known as the β€˜Hound of Hounslow’, following his contribution to the 2010 β€˜flash crash’.

β€˜A first-class set with a well-deserved reputation’, Three Raymond Buildings is β€˜extremely strong on extradition’. In the international criminal law context, Matthew Butt successfully represented Kumar Lama, a retired Nepalese army colonel, who was tried on two charges (one of which was subject to a hung jury and a retrial, which did not proceed) of torturing two detainees during the Nepalese civil war.

6KBW College Hill contains a number of members experienced in handling heavyweight extradition work for the CPS. On the defence side, David Perry QC defended in Puceviciene, Conrath and Savov v three judicial authorities, concerning section 12A of the Extradition Act 2003’s requirement of sufficient progress in an investigation before a person is extradited under a European Arrest Warrant.

9 Bedford Row has a track record of involvement in international criminal tribunal cases. Sarah Bafadhel represents Assad Hassan Sabra, who is being tried in absentia by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon for his alleged role in the assassination of former Lebanese prime minister Rafic Hariri in 2005.

Unlike other sets ranked in this category, Temple Garden Chambers does not handle domestic criminal law work, but contains some silks, who handle international criminal matters. Karim Khan QC represented Al Jadeed TV and its editor, which were tried and acquitted by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon for contempt of court – the first-ever prosecution of a corporate entity by an international tribunal. Extradition specialist Myles Grandison joined from Drystone Chambers.

5 St Andrews Hill β€˜has an astonishing team of extradition lawyers’. For example, Ben Keith represented Roman Solodchenko, the former chairman of Kazakhstan’s BTA Bank, in extradition proceedings; Ukraine seeks his extradition regarding an alleged $400m fraud.

25 Bedford Row’s Diana Ellis QC and David Hooper QC defend in international criminal tribunal cases. The latter represented William Ruto, the deputy president of Kenya, in high-profile proceedings stemming from violence after the 2007 Kenyan presidential election – the case was dismissed in April 2016.

Drystone Chambers handles a range of extradition work, primarily for requested persons but also for governments. Peter Caldwell represents the CPS in Russian Federation v Zarmaev, a case concerning first approval by a district judge of an extradition to Russia for ten years; Zarmaev, a former Chechen rebel fighter, alleges that the request is politically motivated and that Russian prison conditions violate article 3 of the ECHR.

For some, Furnival Chambers is β€˜a go-to set for extradition law’ that includes a number of juniors, often with strengths in prison conditions cases. James Stansfeld and Nicholas Hearn were both involved in the Supreme Court case of Goluchowski and Sas v Poland, which concerned the level of information required in European Arrest Warrants for persons already convicted.

Garden Court Chambers is β€˜a well-run chambers full of talented barristers with a second-to-none commitment to human rights’. James Mehigan presented an amicus curiae brief on behalf of Child Soldiers International in the International Criminal Court’s reparations process following the conviction of Thomas Lubanga, who used children as soldiers in the Ituri conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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