Heather Williams QC
Heather specialises in civil liberties and human rights cases, particularly actions against the police and other public and private law claims arising from unlawful detention and official misconduct. She also has a substantial discrimination practice involving both employment and non-employment claims. Her recent notable cases have included: BBC present Miriam O'Reilly's landmark victory in her age discrimination Employment Tribunal case; Austin v UK 39692/09 (first European Court of Human Rights decision on legality of police tactic of 'kettling' under Article 5 of the Convention); ZH v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis  EWHC 604 (police restraint of a severely autistic teenager, amounting to disability discrimination, assault and infringement of his rights under Articles 3, 5 & 8 of the Convention); R (Miller) v Independent Assessor  EWCA Civ 609 (correct approach to calculation of compensation for long-term loss of liberty); Ministry of Justice v Scott  EWCA Civ 1215 (when a complainant may be sued for malicious prosecution); R (Houchin) v Secretary of State for Justice  EWHC 454 (Admin) (unprecedented order requiring SSJ to return a 'ghosted' prisoner to open conditions); Smith v Chief Constable of Sussex  UKHL 50 (leading domestic case on claims against police for failing to protect victims of crime under article 2 and / or in negligence).
Called 1985; Gray's Inn; QC 2006. Additionally has sat as a part-time Employment Judge since 2005; deputy-chair of the Legal Services Commission's Special Cases Review Panel; joint deputy head of Doughty Street Chambers. Publications of note: co-author of 'Police Misconduct: Legal Remedies' (4th ed.) published by the Legal Action Group.
Discrimination Law Association; Liberty; Justice; Industrial Law Society; Inquest; Police Actions Lawyers Group.
Portsmouth High School; Kings College London (1984 LLB First Class Hons).
Supporting Portsmouth FC, rock music and yoga.