Back to United Kingdom - The Bar

Leading Silks

Alex Bailin QCMatrix ChambersHe is a superb advocate, able to argue all points with persuasion and skill. He drafts really thorough, and tight, skeleton arguments, and works as a team. He has a great manner with clients and is an accomplished performer in court.
Diana Ellis QC - 25 Bedford RowShe is an excellent advocate and brilliant lawyer. She is master of all the material in the cases in which she is instructed. Her knowledge of practice and procedure in international tribunals is second to none.
Edward Fitzgerald QC - Doughty Street ChambersEdward is a gifted advocate who can persuade a skeptical court, which is a very rare skill.
James Hines QC - Three Raymond BuildingsHis advocacy demonstrates a real depth of understanding in extradition but very much assisted by his criminal work as well. He is a well-respected, calm and authoritative advocate with whom it is a real pleasure to work.
David Josse QC - 5 St Andrews HillOne of the leading silks when it comes to extradition law and someone that I would not hesitate to instruct whenever there is the opportunity to instruct a QC. He is extremely personable, and first-class in guiding clients.
Steven Kay QC - 9 Bedford RowMr Kay commands a powerful knowledge of middle east affairs and the workings of foreign governments and their legal systems. He is able to communicate without jargon the nuances between various legal systems and international order and norms. And he is able to get the ear of top officials to facilitate decision-making.
Hugo Keith QC - Three Raymond BuildingsBrilliant on the law and hugely influential in court, he wins the confidence of clients.
Helen Malcolm QC - Three Raymond BuildingsHelen is an assertive and well-prepared barrister who is extremely well-versed in extradition law, but also financial crime which is a bonus with extradition relating to such offences.
Clare Montgomery QC - Matrix ChambersClare is the consummate barrister - strategically aware, legally astute, prodigiously hard working and makes her advocacy look effortless.
Mark Summers QC - Matrix ChambersHe is a genuine expert in his field and is one of the most knowledgeable silks on the market. He is also a commanding advocate, a pleasure to be led by and a fearsome opponent.
Rodney Dixon QC - Temple Garden ChambersVery approachable, with a razor-sharp intellect.
Courtenay Griffiths QC - 25 Bedford RowHis persuasiveness emanates around the whole courtroom.
Jonathan Hall QC - 6KBW College HillIntimidatingly intelligent; judges appreciate his concise advocacy style.
David Hooper QC - 25 Bedford RowDavid has had very extensive experience in the fields of both international criminal law and extradition. The international work allows the advocate to undertake investigative work in order to prepare the defence. He is exceptionally good at discovering evidence and gaining the assistance of locals for this purpose.
James Lewis QC - Three Raymond BuildingsJames is incredibly intuitive and a very lateral-thinking true leader in the field. Provides precise, timely advice on highly technical matters.
Tim Moloney QC - Doughty Street ChambersAn absolute delight. Diplomatic and collaborative, and always goes the extra mile for the client. Excellent oral advocacy.
David Perry QC - 6KBW College HillProbably the best criminal counsel of his generation. Impeccable judgement. The go to lawyer for corporate and government clients on the most complex and delicate legal issues.
Steven Powles QC - Doughty Street ChambersSteven is an expert in this field and a compelling advocate.

2020 Silks

Matthew Butt QC - Three Raymond BuildingsMatthew has a supremely sharp intellect. He is a great choice for any case involving complex areas of law. He is very well respected by judges who consider him to be authoritative beyond his seniority.
Ben Cooper QC - Doughty Street ChambersBen is extraordinarily committed to achieving the best possible outcome for his clients and puts enormous effort into trying to do this.

2021 Silks

Clair Dobbin QC - Three Raymond BuildingsExcellent and incisive drafting skills. Meticulous preparation. Is always fully and completely prepared. Brilliant mind.
Ben Watson QC - Three Raymond BuildingsBen is extraordinarily easy to work with and able to reassure clients with his grasp of both the factual detail of their cases and the law. He has the ability to draft both clearly and persuasively.

2022 Silks

Rachel Barnes QC - Three Raymond BuildingsAn exceptional talent in which there is not a single weakness. Every interaction is a master class in the intricacies of extradition.

Leading Juniors

Amanda Bostock - Furnival ChambersAmanda is a very confident and experienced advocate. She is calm, concise and coherent with a good eye for detail. Amanda has the ability to quickly get to grips with and identify issues from a large volume of material.
Michelle Butler - Matrix ChambersShe is resolute in her commitment to the law and her clients. She combines real expertise with real emotional intelligence.
Peter Caldwell - Doughty Street ChambersPeter is a giant in this field. He has a deep knowledge of international crime and extradition and the constitutional principles which underpin this area.
Iain Edwards - 1MCBA composed and highly competent advocate. Very experienced in international criminal law matters with a concomitant comprehensive understanding of this area of the law.
Malcolm Hawkes - Doughty Street ChambersOne of the most hardworking barristers I know. Very good with vulnerable clients, especially good with clients with mental health problems.
Nicholas Hearn - Furnival ChambersNicholas is able to make his points succinctly and without the need to overstate them but so they are effective.
Joe Holmes9 Bedford RowJoe is at the very top of his game and is an unrivalled practitioner in international law in my view. He is the go to person in diverse national and international jurisdictions for the most complex of cases.
Ben Keith - 5 St Andrews HillHe has a particular expertise in political cases and is very knowledgeable on current affairs in Russia and the Middle East.
Joel Smith - Furnival ChambersA senior and experienced extradition specialist, able to bring advocacy and litigation experience as treasury counsel that few others can match.
James Stansfeld - Matrix ChambersA brilliant extradition specialist. Really rolls up his sleeves and gets stuck into a case. Judges rightly trust his judgement. Wins cases through sheer hard work and acquired specialist knowledge.
Saoirse Townshend - Temple Garden ChambersIncredibly capable extradition barrister. She is very knowledgeable and well regarded. by the extradition world. She is always keen to argue test cases in extradition and is regularly looking for new lines of challenge.
Sarah Bafadhel - 9 Bedford RowSarah is a highly sought-after team member in international criminal cases. She is very bright, works incredibly hard, and is the go-to person if you want a sensible insight into even the most esoteric aspect of international criminal law.
Catherine Brown   - 6KBW College Hill  ‘Excellent, clever, tenacious and highly experienced. Catherine is able to adapt to the needs of a particular case and combines the qualities of a good prosecutor with those of a good defender.
Louisa Collins - 5 St Andrews HillLouisa is very approachable and a formidable advocate, well-respected by the judiciary and colleagues alike.
Rosemary Davidson - 6KBW College HillA superb imaginative lawyer with excellent judgement.
Natasha Draycott - 5 St Andrews HillShe is brilliant with clients and commands a great deal of trust from them. She is very good in cases with human rights considerations and is a fantastic advocate.
Aidan Ellis - Temple Garden ChambersHe is very experienced in cases involving human rights elements.
Julia Farrant - Furnival ChambersJulia has no weaknesses, only strengths. Her knowledge of the law and awareness of the developing issues is impressive.
Myles Grandison - Temple Garden ChambersAlways mining the law to develop new arguments. A genuine lateral thinker to whom some of the significant leaps in extradition law owe their genesis.
Gillian Higgins - 9 Bedford RowLeading junior of unparalleled experience in international criminal law, who has been in all the leading cases that have shaped this area of international law.
Rebecca Hill - 5 St Andrews HillRebecca is an excellent advocate and communicator who is exceptionally knowledgeable regarding extradition law.
Hannah Hinton - Serjeants' Inn ChambersShe is tenacious on her feet and not afraid to stand her ground. Her client care and unwavering support for her client distinguish her. She is hardworking and her enthusiastic approach never wanes.
Florence Iveson - Matrix ChambersA star amongst the junior extradition bar. Florence's written advice is excellent and her understanding and application of extradition law is impressive.
Rachel Kapila - Cloth Fair ChambersHugely impressive, she has a razor-sharp mind. One of the most able and prominent junior barristers in the field.
Adam Payter - 6KBW College HillAdam is an all round advocate with impressive maturity given his call. He is excellent on paper, which is essential at the modern Bar, and a calm thoughtful presence with clients. He is a measured and persuasive court room performer, who will only improve in the years to come. One to watch.
Rachel Scott - Three Raymond BuildingsAn excellent extradition barrister. She has exceptional judgement and is determined to isolate and then pursue the points that will actually win.
Benjamin Seifert - Temple Garden ChambersHe is unafraid to explore novel arguments in extradition cases.
Daniel Sternberg - Temple Garden ChambersDaniel is an incredibly bright barrister, one of the best and a true asset to the industry. He is well respected for his legal knowledge and is recommended time and time again, which speaks volumes in terms of the perception others have for him.
Nina Tavakoli - Red Lion ChambersNina is a natural advocate – passionate about her cases, on top of her brief and a pleasure to work with.
Mary Westcott - Doughty Street ChambersMary is a forceful and determined advocate who is renowned for identifying every possible ground of challenge and exploring it to its maximum. She is thorough in preparation, cares about her clients and doggedly determined.
David Young - Red Lion ChambersA very competent, experienced and professional barrister. He is a measured and thoughtful lawyer who is well respected by the judges and opposing counsel.
Sareta Ashraph - Garden Court ChambersSareta's knowledge of the substance matter and her ability to conduct, often innovative, legal analysis are unparalleled. That is why she is regarded an authority in international criminal law but what makes her stand out is her dedication to the work and to the victims of international crimes.
Sam Blom-Cooper - 25 Bedford RowSam is an outstanding lawyer who excels both at legal argument and witness handling. He is also an excellent strategic thinker and a superb advocate. I would recommend him particularly for complex and sensitive international cases.
Amal Clooney - Doughty Street ChambersAmal combines real expertise across several related areas (human rights law, international criminal law, and public international law), with superb advocacy at all levels. She is a natural leader, with a commanding presence before courts and international tribunals.
Rhys Davies - Temple Garden ChambersRhys is a standout international lawyer. He is the go to barrister for submissions to the United Nations in complex cases.
Haydee Dijkstal - 33 Bedford RowHaydee is an international law barrister of the highest calibre. Her forensic attention to detail when examining evidence and legal arguments, her expert knowledge of international law and human rights systems, and theirfierce advocacy mean that in every case her client's interests are managed and protected in the best possible way.
Richard Evans - 6KBW College HillNoted for representing international governments in extradition matters.
Monica Feria-TintaTwenty EssexA junior who is very competent and dedicated to her work.
Graeme Hall - Doughty Street ChambersVery intelligent, thorough and leaves no stone unturned. Graeme is never afraid to raise challenges on his clients’ behalf. Also very impressive in the level of his preparation work.
Megan HirstDoughty Street ChambersA true subject matter expert, she is strategic and insightful in her approach. Excellent legal drafting and oral advocacy. Exemplary interpersonal skills, including managing challenging situations with diplomacy and integrity.
Kathryn Howarth - Temple Garden ChambersKathryn is a very experienced advocate in the field on international criminal law. She is practical and balanced, she is hard working and has good attention to factual details and a strong understanding of the legal issues.
Ben Joyes - 9 Bedford RowHe is a powerful advocate and has a thorough knowledge of both international criminal law and extradition where his work being instructed by the requesting state is noteworthy.
Gemma Lindfield - 5 St Andrews HillAn excellent advocate and very persuasive on her feet. She is never phased by often difficult and demanding judges and will steadfastly argue on behalf of her clients.
Ben Lloyd - 6KBW College HillBen is one in a million. Steely but empathetic. Calm with demanding clients. Creative but realistic.
Catriona Murdoch - 1 Crown Office RowShe is a brilliant advocate, forceful and pragmatic.
Amelia Nice - Doughty Street ChambersAmelia is sympathetic, client focussed, you really know that she cares about her clients. She is an authority on the interplay between extradition and family law in particular appearing in many of the significant cases on the subject.
Émilie Pottle - Temple Garden ChambersA very capable advocate who is thorough in her research. Specific expertise in breaches of Article 3 ECHR arguments and always works incredibly hard by preparing regular written submissions in the face of regularly served new evidence from the International Judicial Authority.
Alexander dos Santos - Serjeants' Inn ChambersDiligent, organised, ambitious, responsive and a very competent advocate.
Jonathan Swain - 9 Bedford RowJonathan is a very able junior barrister. He achieves some fantastic results and he always has his finger on the pulse.
David Williams - 5 St Andrews HillAt the forefront of the extradition market, tactically astute and responsive, David is an in-demand extradition junior that has a successful practice in both the Magistrates' Court and High Court.

Rising Stars

Danielle Barden - 5 St Andrews HillAn up and coming and very capable barrister. She has an impressive grip on issues at hand and is very thorough in her preparation, regularly achieving fantastic outcomes for her clients.
Jessica Jones - Matrix ChambersJessica is hard working and intelligent. Her written submissions are exceptional and she has a real talent for managing and meeting the expectations of clients.

International crime and extradition in London Bar

Doughty Street Chambers

Doughty Street Chambers is the ‘pre-eminent set in this area‘, with ‘excellent silks and juniors at all levels‘. Representing individual victims backed by non-profit organisation Reprieve, deputy head of chambers Tim Moloney QC and Megan Hirst successfully appealed against the decision of the ICC Pre-Trial Chamber to refuse the prosecutor permission to investigate war crimes and crimes against humanity arising from the Afghan conflict. In extradition work, Peter Caldwell, Malcolm Hawkes and Amelia Nice have a strong defence practice in this area, with deep knowledge of the political and human rights issues in Russia and the former Soviet Union. Nice appeared in Russia v Zmikhnovskiy, a widely reported extradition case involving allegations of a £40m fraud, with arguments concerning whether the Russian prosecution was being used as a way to persecute the individual based on his connections to a former Russian defence minister.

Testimonials

Set

‘Doughty Street is a top-notch set, with a wide range of quality advocates who have all been first-rate in their advice and presentation and prompt in their reporting outcomes and when providing advice.’

‘Arguably the top set in international crime and extradition with a range of extremely capable and excellent counsel.’

‘A set which is incomparable to others. Truly unique as they house some of the biggest names in the industry and offer a variety of disciplines.’

‘Doughty Street is an outstanding extradition set, with excellent silks and juniors at all levels.’

Clerking

‘Very polite, helpful and efficient. I have dealt with Marc Gilby who was very pleasant to work with.’

‘We have always had positive experiences with the clerks; Rebecca Gilchrist and Marc Gilby are very efficient in all dealings, replying quickly in arranging cover and conferences.’

‘Rebecca Gilchrist is very efficient and thorough. Always on hand to assist.’

‘Matt Butchard is an excellent clerk.’

Matrix Chambers

Matrix Chambers stands out as 'one of the very best sets for extradition/international criminal work', with members often acting in high profile, cross-jurisdictional matters. Alex Bailin QC is defending Russian billionaire Oleg Tinkov against an extradition request from the United States for two offences concerning alleged tax fraud to the value of $200m. Also in extradition, Clare Montgomery QC successfully represented Vijay Mallya in proceedings brought on behalf of India regarding alleged frauds leading to the collapse of the Kingfisher airline. At the junior end of chambers, Michelle Butler continues to represent the former President of Georgia, Mikheil Sakashvilli, in relation to an investigation by the ICC of the conduct of Georgian forces during the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008.

Testimonials

Set

‘Matrix Chambers has a large talent pool at several different levels of seniority.’

‘A very strong extradition team with breadth and depth.’

‘One of the very best sets around for extradition/international criminal work and particularly complex and high profile matters. They are an outstanding set.’

‘Matrix’s extradition team is very strong. In Clare Montgomery QC and Mark Summers QC, the set has two of the strongest silks in the area.’

Clerking

‘Matrix has an enviable clerks room. Responsive and giving a personal service, they are a pleasure to deal with. Worthy of particular mention is practice area manager Paul Venables who is efficient, friendly, and fun.’

Three Raymond Buildings

Three Raymond Buildings ‘is a phenomenal set‘. Key names in the team include Hugo Keith QC, who regularly appears in high-profile extradition cases. In one prominent example, Keith QC represented Arif Naqvi, founder of collapsed Dubai-based private equity house Abraaj, who was being sought by the United States for alleged fraud and money laundering. Clair Dobbin QC and Ben Watson QC were new silk appointments in March 2021; Watson QC is acting for the CPS in securing the extradition of Alexandre Djouhri to France, concerning his alleged role in a corrupt electoral financing scheme to support former French president Nicolas Sarkozy, who was convicted of corruption offences in 2021.

Testimonials

Set

‘Excellent in strength and depth and accomplished in criminal, regulatory, public law/inquests and international law. A very strong set.’

‘3RB are a superb set, with consistent quality across the board.’

‘3RB is a phenomenal set of chambers. The junior end all bat well above their call.’

‘A go-to chambers for extradition.’

Clerking

‘It a friendly and approachable clerks room which wants to help in every way they can. No job is beyond them.’

‘Eddie Holland is superb.’

‘Very professional and easy to work with.’

5 St Andrews Hill

5 St Andrews Hill is ‘one of the leading sets in international crime and extradition‘, with extensive expertise in European Arrest Warrant cases and challenges to Interpol red notices. Louisa Collins, Ben Keith and David Williams are representing three individual defendants in three linked cases concerning extradition to Moldova, which was refused due to prison conditions amounting to inhuman and degrading treatment; Moldova v Coev was the first case in which the Moldovan Government permitted a defence-instructed expert to carry out a prison inspection. Natasha Draycott is a ‘fantastic advocate‘, with experience in handling extradition cases concerning prison overcrowding, conditions and assurances.

Testimonials

Set

‘Chambers have an excellent selection of barristers, at all levels. Even the most junior barristers have received excellent training from more senior advocates and so you can be confident that they know their stuff. They are probably the largest extradition set in London.’

‘One of the leading sets in international crime and extradition, which has a great depth of counsel from the most senior to the most junior. Arguably the most accessible in terms of number of counsel that can boast niche extradition experience.’

 

Clerking

‘The clerks are very knowledgeable about the practices of their barristers, and are great at recommending someone suitable. Dean Cook in particular has a lot of respect and confidence from his barristers and he goes over and above in maintaining a quality practice.’

‘I am very impressed with the clerks at this set. It has now become my number one ‘go to’ set. This is in no small part thanks to the excellent and committed clerking service. Dean Cook and Gary Norton in particular are extremely efficient and will always go the extra mile to assist in any way that they can.’

‘Dean Cook is quick to respond and is seemingly available at all hours, going the extra mile to ensure new cases are covered whenever possible.’

9 Bedford Row

A leading set in international criminal law with a global reputation as a result of the strong team of experienced juniors and Queen’s Counsel‘, 9 Bedford Row is ‘the ‘go to’ set for international criminal law‘. Steven Kay QC is advising Ian Lundin, the CEO of Lundin Energy, on universal jurisdiction proceedings in Sweden concerning allegations of war crimes committed in Sudan between 1997 and 2003 – this is the first prosecution of a corporation for war crimes under the doctrine in the country. Juniors of note include Joe Holmes, who is ‘at the very top of his game‘, and Gillian Higgins , who stands out for her ‘unparalleled experience‘ in international criminal matters.

Testimonials

Set

‘The set has true strength across the bands of experience.’

‘9 Bedford Row are emerging as keen players in the field of extradition. They have a well respected presence.’

‘A set which has grown rapidly in recent years, expanding its extradition and international team and who are now a mainstay of the London extradition Bar.’

Clerking

‘The clerks have experience in this unique market and know how to provide a service to its international clients. Martin Secrett is recommended.’

‘The clerks room is very good and Martin Secrett leads a professional and well-disposed team who are unfailingly helpful.’

‘Mark Cornell has particular experience in clerking extradition.’

Temple Garden Chambers

Temple Garden Chambers ‘has an excellent reputation in the field of international criminal law with some leading silks and juniors‘. Notable instructions include Rodney Dixon QC leading in a case in the ICC on behalf of the Uyghur groups seeking an investigation into allegations of genocide and crimes against humanity committed by a Chinese official, while Aidan Ellis is representing Saif Al-Islam Gadafi in relation to his admissibility challenge before the International Criminal Court. Karim Khan QC was appointed as the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court; he remains a member of chambers but is no longer featured in the ranking tables as he practices in that capacity. Turning to extradition work, Saoirse Townshend is an ‘incredibly capable extradition barrister‘. She represented a requested person in the lead case concerning the competence of the Polish courts to issue European Arrest Warrants following controversial changes the Polish judicial system.

Testimonials

Set

‘The set has an excellent reputation in the field of international criminal law with some leading silks and juniors.’

‘Temple Garden Chambers are very well respected for the professional and first class service they provide. There are a number of excellent barristers.’

‘Excellent depth of experience in extradition matters.’

Clerking

‘All the clerks are professional and competent and work hard to accommodate us.’

‘Pragmatic, practical and hard working- go above and beyond to help.’

25 Bedford Row

25 Bedford Row's members are active in international criminal law matters in the Hague as well as before ad-hoc institutions. David Hooper QC‘s ‘sheer extent of experiences relating to international humanitarian law places him within a small cadre of practitioners who really know their stuff at this level‘. He is currently representing Hashim Thaçi, the former Prime Minister and President of Kosovo, who is charged with crimes against humanity and war crimes before the Kosovo Specialist Chambers, a specialist Kosovar court with foreign judges sitting in the Hague to hear cases regarding the end of the Kosovo war in the late 1990s. Diana Ellis QC is highly sought after on cases in the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals.

Testimonials

Set

‘The set as a whole is recognised as one, if not the, leading defence set in the UK. Those within the set working in the field of international criminal law and human rights law are recognised as the some of the leaders in their fields.’

Clerking

‘Good administrative support is essential and 25 Bedford Row has it in plenty.’

‘The clerks’ room is efficient and offers an excellent service to the barristers within chambers and to the clients from outside. The team as a whole is strong and the ethos of hard work and efficiency is exemplified by the Senior Clerk, Guy Williams.’

‘There is an extremely competent team of clerks from senior to the more junior level. There is an awareness of the importance of efficiency, diligence and courtesy.’

6KBW College Hill

6KBW College Hill has ‘great strength and depth‘ and ‘remains very strong in the field‘ of extradition law, a core strength of the practice. Ben Lloyd ‘is one in a million‘ and has a well-balanced prosecution and defence practice, where he acts for requesting states and individual defendants. Jonathan Hall QC is instructed by the CPS in the case of a Latvian man sought for robbery offences for which he was convicted in 2014, with at issue if Latvian prosecutors constitute “judicial authorities” for the purposes of European Arrest Warrants.

Testimonials

Set

‘I’ve worked with barristers at 6KBW College Hill and they are all very impressive, without exception.’

‘The set has nine barristers on the Attorney General’s panel of Counsel, so it has great strength in depth. It also has academic members.’

‘Great strength and depth. Leading silks such as David Perry QC at the top of the tree, and then quality throughout to the most junior end.’

Clerking

‘Andrew Barnes steers the ship masterfully.’

‘The clerks are efficient, courteous and straightforward.’

‘Andrew Barnes, Mark Essex, Richard Summerscales and Lizzie Miler are a delight to deal with.’

Furnival Chambers

Furnival Chambers has ‘an exceptional extradition team, with some of the leading practitioners in the field‘,  including Joel Smith, who is representing a man whose extradition is requested by India, on the grounds that the requested person allegedly entered in to a conspiracy with the Pakistani intelligence services to murder religious figures and political leaders in India as part of a Sikh separatist terror campaign. Nicholas Hearn‘s caseload features complex fraud extradition cases, while extradition specialist Amanda Bostock ‘is a tenacious barrister, with a meticulous eye for detail‘.

Testimonials

Set

‘Furnival Chambers is an impressive set – with a particular focus on defence work. Friendly approach to clerking. The barristers work together to assist in every way that they can, it is very much a team work makes the dream work approach.’

‘Great set of chambers for extradition work. Very defence minded and have a well earned respectable reputation for within the extradition Bar.’

‘Furnival has an exceptional extradition team, with some of the leading practitioners in the field.’

‘A strong set.’

Clerking

‘The extradition clerks at Furnival are friendly, approachable and efficient. The service they provide is outstanding. All are a pleasure to work with.’

‘Fred Cross in particular is a great extradition clerk.’