Firms To Watch: Civil liberties and human rights

The Manchester-based team of Farleys Solicitors LLP combines strengths in advising victims of abuse, human rights act claims, fatal accidents, inquests and claims against local authorities.
The offering at Gherson LLP overlaps both the human rights and the extradition, mutual assistance and INTERPOL practices; Charles Burnett heads up the former, whilst the latter is under the leadership of ex-SFO lead investigative lawyer, Thomas Cattee, who joined the firm in February 2021.
Spearheaded by renowned civil liberties and human rights expert Nicola Mackintosh KC, the growing Mackintosh Law law practice also fields COP work specialist Zena Soormally Bolwig.
Under the leadership of Tom Goodhead, Pedro Martins and Tomás Mousinho, the claimant-side litigation team at Pogust Goodhead (formerly PGMBM) specialises in handling large-scale, human rights and environmental breaches committed by the international subsidiaries of globally dominating corporations.

Civil liberties and human rights in London

Bhatt Murphy

The ‘experts who are top of their game‘ comprising the Bhatt Murphy team bring ‘a depth of experience in ground-breaking human rights cases‘ to its core expert areas of police and prison law, immigration detention, and security services work. Janet Farrell specialises in public and private law actions for those detained under immigration powers, with a particular focus on the rights of vulnerable groups. Jane Ryan and Carolynn Gallwey are key names fronting the firm’s ‘top of the tree‘ offering focused on the civil rights of prisoners, while Tony Murphy specialises in securing accountability against state agents. Mark Scott regularly acts in cases against the police, Home Office, Ministry of Justice and Security Services; his work frequently has a cross-border element to it. Founding partner Raju Bhatt continues to be a key guiding presence within the department.

Other key lawyers:

Raju Bhatt; Carolynn Gallwey; Tony Murphy; Mark Scott; Jane Ryan; Janet Farrell; Michael Oswald; Sophie Naftalin; Simon Creighton


‘Everyone I have worked with from Bhatt Murphy has been impressive, driven and compassionate to a degree I have not experienced from other practices. I have found their knowledge of domestic abuse and coercive control particularly impressive.’

‘Predominately I work with Sophie Naftalin who I have found exceptional to work with. She is knowledgeable, clear and committed to her clients. She goes the extra mile and when Sophie is involved with a case I always know it is in safe hands.’

‘The team at Bhatt Murphy are exceptionally committed to their clients, professional and experienced in public law and representing clients in civil liberty cases. They have a depth of experience in ground-breaking human rights cases.’

‘As to the individuals, Raju Bhatt is good with clients, authoritative and highly successful in the field of police actions, and public law cases with a human rights aspect. Simon Creighton is the supreme professor of prison law. Scholarly, caring, committed, tactically astute and visionary when it comes to test cases.’

‘Experts who are top of their game, generous with their expertise to colleagues and display humanity and compassion in the way they conduct their casework while being realistic and focused.’

‘BM are right at the top of the tree for civil liberties. They have done most of the key prison law cases over the last 30 years or so, plus now a number of the key immigration detention cases, and public inquiries.’

‘Simon Creighton is right at the top of the tree for prison law. Sophie Naftalin is doing top inquest work, particularly for women. Very good judgment all, including in what will and will not fly in the higher courts.’

‘It is hard to describe in words how hard Janet Farrell worked on the case to stop the discriminatory practice. Janet read thousands pages of highly technical documents and prepared a chronology of events. Her dedication to the case was unbelievable.’

Work highlights

  • Represents Child Q, a 15-year-old schoolgirl who was subjected to a strip search by police officers on school premises without an Appropriate Adult in attendance.
  • Represented the family of Jason Lennon in inquest proceedings following his death by restraint.
  • Represents Louise Powell who gave birth to a stillborn baby, Brooke, in prison toilets at HMP Styal in June 2020.

Bindmans LLP

Bindmans LLP enjoys a ‘long-standing and wholly justified reputation as a firm that operates at the cutting edge of civil liberties and human rights work‘. The team continues to be regarded as a go-to advisor for applications to the European Court in relation to human rights breaches in Europe and elsewhere; torture and abuse claims, extradition cases, inquests and inquiries, freedom of assembly matters, protest and undercover policing issues, and mandates concerning victims’ rights in criminal trials are all part of the team’s regular workload. Jules Carey, Kate Goold, Tayab Ali, John Halford, Jamie Potter and Paul Ridge are the key names to note at leadership level. Other recommended practitioners making up the firm’s deep bench include inquests expert Anna Thwaites, recently promoted partner Salima Budhani and ‘one to watch’ Shirin Marker.

Practice head(s):

Jules Carey; Kate Goold; Tayab Ali; John Halford; Jamie Potter; Paul Ridge

Other key lawyers:

Salima Budhani; Anna Thwaites; Theodora Middleton; Shirin Marker; Rachel Harger


‘The civil liberties and human rights practice at Bindmans is really first rate. They combine really strong lawyers with first rate client care and highly efficient case handling. With frequently high profile cases handled by them, they really work well together as a team and turn out top notch legal work.’

‘Salima Budhani – fiercly intelligent, but compellingly practical: she really thinks creatively and pushes you to come up with new solutions you hadn’t even contemplated. Routinely handles very big and legally significant, or high profile cases.’

‘Shirin Marker is a real one to watch – bright, efficient, excellent client rapport and can get to grips with the most complex of cases, quickly. Particular expertise with vulnerable female clients, and cases involving closed material/ secret evidence.’

‘Bindmans have a long-standing and wholly justified reputation as a firm that operates at the cutting edge of civil liberties and human rights work. They combine market-leading subject matter expertise with exceptional client care. The firm benefits from the breadth of its practice, with a strong cross-disciplinary approach.’

‘Salima Budhani is an outstanding practitioner with a broad public law practice. She combines exceptional insight and technical ability with wonderful client care.’

‘John Halford – knows everything. Salima Budhani – really excellent partner, best in class. Theodora Middleton – very very good lawyer, on the way up. Rachel Harger – very good civil actions specialist.’

‘I do really appreciate their outstanding communication. They went the extra mile to clarify legal procedures and various, probable outcomes. Their approach has always been professional and, at the same time, warm and empathetic, which is not that common.’

‘They are very dedicated. From their behaviour and endevaour, I can see they regard their job as their mission.’

Key clients

‘Reclaim these Streets’, a group dedicated to women’s safety

Individuals affected by Covid-19 Regulations

Asylum seekers placed in the Napier Military Barracks

Bereaved, Survivors and Residents (BSRs) of the Grenfell Tower Fire

Mother of a patient that died due to failures in her medical care

Member of family of a man who died from Covid-19 contracted after transporting an infected patient

Big Brother Watch

Women deprived of their British citizenship

Individuals subjected to hotel quarantine

Leader of Biafran separatist movement

Refugee teenager refused reunification with his brothers

Man who takes life after participating in a reality TV show

Individual included as “non-violent extremist” in a press release

Individuals who had their voting rights violated

Families who suffered having their deceased relative’s identities appropriated without consent by undercover police officers

Work highlights

  • Successfully represented four claimants in their challenge against the Metropolitan Police for preventing them from organising a socially-distanced vigil to be held on 13th March 2021 in the memory of Sarah Everard.
  • Assisting with the secured release and safe transfer of 22 asylum seekers from the Napier Military Barracks to suitable alternative accommodation.
  • Representing the mother of Jackie Maguire who judicially reviewed the coroner after he ruled Article 2 (right to life) was not engaged in her daughter’s case, who was in a residential care home and subjected to deprivation of liberty safeguards under the Mental Capacity Act 2005.

Deighton Pierce Glynn

Deighton Pierce Glynn is regarded as a ‘go-to firm for exciting, innovative claimant discrimination and human rights cases‘. Sarah Ricca and Jo Eggleton (both of whom are highly regarded for their significant track record of successfully challenging police abuses) jointly head up the team – their expertise in this area is instrumental in cementing the firm’s reputation as a pre-eminent player in police misconduct litigation. Other key contacts among the multitude of ‘really exceptional lawyers of significant experience and weight‘ present in the group include Jane Deighton, a senior statesperson ‘who has pushed the boundaries of police and inquest law‘; managing partner Polly GlynnSue Willman, who regularly handles cross-border mandates; and Sasha Rozansky, who broad workload spans community care and asylum support.

Practice head(s):

Sarah Ricca; Jo Eggleton

Other key lawyers:

Polly Glynn; Sue Willman; Sasha Rozansky; Clare Hayes; Emily Soothill; Jane Deighton; Lorna Barron


‘Jo Eggleton is a brilliant civil liberties solicitor, completely committed to her inquest clients, and has done amazing work trying to tackle suicides and violence in prison. She is diligent, committed and courageous.’

‘DPG’s civil liberties & human rights team is at the cutting edge of this area. They are particularly good at pushing test cases in legally and politically sensitive areas and have got a large number of really exceptional lawyers of significant experience and weight.’

‘In my opinion, DPG is one of the outstanding civil liberties solicitors’ firms in the country. All their solicitors who have instructed me are indefatigable defenders of human rights. They are hardworking, committed, legally astute, totally on top of their cases, and utterly dedicated to client care and obtaining the best possible results for the lay clients.’

‘Jane Deighton – a 40-50 year history of exemplary commitment to her clients – an excellent lawyer who has pushed the boundaries of police and inquest law – every time I work with Jane, I learn something new – she still has boundless energy and positivity.’

‘The team at DPG bring diligence, passion and compassion to their work. They are incredibly client focused and ensure that the often vulnerable people that they work with are not only well advised, but well supported.’

‘Jo Eggleton – the senior solicitor of choice for prison death inquests and litigation bringing top level experience, judgment and client skills. Jane Deighton – fights tirelessly for her clients, including by leaving no stone unturned in researching her cases and relentlessly demanding the best from her counsel team. Clare Hayes – a rising star in civil liberties litigation.’

‘They are the go-to firm for exciting, innovative claimant discrimination and human rights cases.’

‘Lorna Barron is fantastic. She is highly knowledgable, excellent with clients and tenacious.’

Key clients

Family of Shane Bryant

Undercover Policing Inquiry

The family of Suzanne Van Hagen

The family of Cherylee Shennan

Leigh Day

At Leigh Day, ‘some of the most skilled litigators in the field‘ come together to form ‘one of the leading teams in the country‘. Jamie Beagent oversees the domestic human rights department, which handles high-profile mandates ranging from inquests and inquiries, to police work and immigration-related judicial reviews. Richard Meeran, meanwhile, heads up the dedicated cross-border offering. The firm is widely renowned for its experience bringing complex group actions, both against the British Government and multinational corporations; Sapna Malik is particularly well regarded in this field. The other ‘fearless lawyers and very creative thinkers‘ comprising the group range from founding partner Sean Humber to standout associate Andrew Lord.

Practice head(s):

Jamie Beagent; Richard Meeran

Other key lawyers:

Andrew Lord; Sean Humber; Alison Millar; Sapna Malik; Tessa Gregory; Waleed Sheikh; Stephanie Hill; Yvonne Kestler


‘One of the leading teams in the country, often dealing in the most complex and high profile cases. They have deep expertise in the area and some of the most skilled litigators in the field.’

‘Alison Millar and Andrew Lord are amongst the stand out practitioners that I would mention. I think both of them have exceptional client handling skills which really complements their professional expertise.’

‘Hands-down the best claimant firm for civil liberties and human rights in the country. They have strength at every level of seniority and know the law back to front. They are also fearless lawyers and very creative thinkers. They are a pleasure to work with.’

‘In my view, Leigh Day is at the very top of the London (and UK generally) firms that work in the civil liberties and human rights sector. They are innovative, very client-friendly, and always willing to go the extra mile, including in challenging politically sensitive work.’

‘Yvonne Kestler is an exceptional police actions lawyer. I have had the privilege of working with her since I started practising, and I have found her consistently brilliant in terms of legal acumen, completely committed to her clients, and a delight to work with.

‘The team comprises truly outstanding lawyers who provide clients with an exceptional service.’

‘I have worked with Sapna Malik for more than 10 years and I never cease to marvel at her brilliance as a lawyer, strategist, team leader and instructing solicitor. She manages her team striking a perfect balance between overall command and delegation.’

‘Tessa Gregory is a real standout star in this area. She is responsible for overseeing a multitude of complex and cutting-edge human rights claims. It is impossible to say a bad thing about Tessa: she is dedicated, fearless, strategically astute and immerses herself in the factual and legal detail of her cases.’

Key clients

Kabwe Lead Poisoning Class Action

Milasi Josiya & Others v British American Tobacco PLC, British American Tobacco (GLP), Imperial Brands PLC & 5 others.

AAA & Others v (1) Camellia Plc (2) Linton Park Plc (3) Robertson Bois Dickson Anderson Ltd

Magret Thomas & 30 Ors v PGI Group Ltd

AAA & others v (1) Petra Diamonds Limited & (2) Williamson Diamonds Limited

Various; health and social care

Various; inquests

Various; abuse and exploitation

Various; children and vulnerable adults

Various; privacy and data breaches

Various; discrimination

Various; inquiries

Various; immigration

Various; prisons and police

Various; judicial review

Work highlights

  • Acting for the Hepatitis C Trust and over 500 individuals in the Infected Blood Inquiry.
  • Acting for multiple individuals who have suffered severe physical assaults at the hands of security guards employed by British multinationals abroad.
  • Instructed by relatives of Agnes Wanjiru, a 21-year-old Kenyan woman, who was stabbed and dumped in a septic tank near a British army base in 2012.

Birnberg Peirce & Partners

At Birnberg Peirce & Partners, ‘tactically shrewd and wonderfully caringMarcia Willis Stewart helms an offering which remains ‘undoubtedly one of the best firms in the field of civil liberties and human rights‘. The team remains widely known for its landmark representation of 77 of the Hillsborough families in judicial review proceedings, and continues to ‘truly champion the underdog and fight to the very last for clients‘. The group has developed a particular specialism in acting for community groups, defending clients accused by the state of terrorist-related activities, and working in the violence against women sector; the last of these areas is a particular focus for Harriet Wistrich. The department’s ‘reputation draws many of the brightest and most dedicated lawyers‘ in the field, including Irène Nembhard and Tara Mulcair.

Practice head(s):

Marcia Willis Stewart

Other key lawyers:

Irène Nembhard; Harriet Wistrich; Sarah Kellas; Kate Thomas; Tara Mulcair; Hazel Metcalfe


‘Birnbergs has a massive and well deserved reputation for being a leading civil liberties firm. Their commitment is second to none. The reputation draws many of the brightest and most dedicated lawyers.’

‘Kate Thomas is outstanding; incredibly hard working, very perceptive, great judgment.’

‘Tara Mulcair is brilliant. She is extremely likeable, well organised and passionate about her clients. Her drafting is impeccable. Tara is absolutely one to watch in this sector.’

‘Birnbergs is undoubtedly one of the best firms in the field of civil liberties and human rights. They truly champion the underdog and fight to the very last for clients.’

‘Leaders in the civil liberties field. Gold standard instructions and utterly committed to holding power to account.’

‘Marcia Willis Stewart is the best human rights solicitor in the country. She combines empathy with her clients with steely integrity. She is also brilliant at recruiting and training young solicitors.’

‘Marcia Willis Stewart has been involved in some of the most important and high profile cases of recent times. She is both tactically shrewd and wonderfully caring.’

‘Irène Nembhard has a diverse practice, and is particularly strong in cases with an immigration element. Clients instantly warm to her. Tara Mulcair is fast becoming a highly experienced solicitor, with a strong reputation amongst her peers.’

Key clients

Various Core Participants of the Undercover Policing Inquiry

Various Core Participants of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry

Various women who were deceived into relationship with undercover police officers

Various clients of the Windrush generation


Work highlights

  • Acting for core participants in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry and the Undercover Policing Inquiry.
  • Acting for a Libyan national in a claim against the UK government arising from the alleged complicity of the British security services in his extraordinary rendition and torture in Libya under the Gadhaffi regime.
  • Acting for the family of a vulnerable adult and survivor of sexual violence at the inquest into her death.

Hickman & Rose

Hickman & Rose‘s ‘reputation has been earned over decades of dedicated work in this field and is well-deserved‘. The team is highly regarded for securing ‘the most magnificent results for their clients‘, particularly in mandates concerning serious abuses of power by police and other detaining authorities. Practice head Daniel Machover ‘is at the top of his field‘, successfully conducting the most complex cases with a nexus to failures in the criminal justice system; this specialism is one which is also a core focus for many other recommended members of the team, including Kate Maynard and Helen Stone.

Practice head(s):

Daniel Machover

Other key lawyers:

Stefano Ruis; Kate Maynard; Helen Stone; Toby Wilton


‘We always felt very privileged that they were our legal team in terms of their deep knowledge and expertise but also their humanity in fighting for justice.’

‘Kate Maynard guided us through the most traumatic time, and did it with humour and complete dedication to our family needs. Her expertise across inquests, prison system and probation was highly valued. Completely supportive in terms of the human impact of press coverage over a long period of time.’

‘Hickman & Rose are well known for their exceptional knowledge and dedication to representing families in particular in difficult inquest cases, which often relate to deaths in custody or other cases where human rights or other challenging issues arise.’

‘Daniel Machover is at the top of his field – he has comprehensive legal knowledge of police, inquests and public law, has brilliant analytical skills, and is wonderful to work with.’

‘Helen Stone is a brilliant solicitor who is razor sharp and thorough, quickly masters the key points in a case, and is very thoughtful and attentive with clients.’

‘Excellent and well established legal knowledge in civil liberties and human rights – without doubt one of the market leaders.’

‘Stefano Ruis – fabulous all round lawyer with every skill that client, counsel or tribunal could ever want.’

‘Hickman & Rose quietly achieves the most magnificent results for their clients – using a combination of public law, private law and inquest/inquiry results.’

Key clients

Grenfell Inquiry


UCPI category M

Civil claim resulting from Grenfell Tower fire

Wormwood Scrubs deaths

Stockwell Six

UCPI non-police/non-state

Work highlights

  • Represented the parents of Jack Merritt, who was killed by Usman Khan in Fishmongers Hall on 29th November 2019.
  • Acted for the mother of Emiliano Sala, an Argentine professional footballer who died in a light aircraft crash while travelling between France and the UK in January 2019.
  • Representing 13 individual core participants at the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.

Hodge Jones & Allen

Hodge Jones & Allen has a proven track record acting in challenging cases against the Independent Office of Police Complaints, the Ministry of Defence, the Crown Prosecution Service and immigration detention centres. The firm is also rapidly becoming known as a go-to representative for those wrongly arrested and mistreated by the police whilst exercising their right to protest. The team is noted as being ‘of excellent quality, from the most junior member of the team up to the most senior of partners‘; at leadership level, practice head Susie Labinjoh is supported by seasoned practitioner Jocelyn Cockburn, who ‘has a brilliant record in bringing important public interest cases‘.

Practice head(s):

Susie Labinjoh

Other key lawyers:

Jocelyn Cockburn; Alice Hardy; Nancy Collins; Gimhani Eriyagolla; Sasha Barton; Sarah Flanagan


‘Jocelyn Cockburn is a leading solicitor in public and police law, who has a brilliant record in bringing important public interest cases, who has meticulous preparation.’

‘The team at Hodge Jones and Allen is of excellent quality, from the most junior member of the team up to the most senior of partners. They work exceptionally well as a team and have been involved in some of the most prominent and high profile cases of recent times.’

‘Susie Labinjoh is an excellent and highly experienced litigator, who cares deeply about her clients and their interests.’

‘Alice Hardy is particularly strong in cases involving women’s rights. She is passionate about achieving the best outcome for her clients.’

‘Sarah Flanagan is extremely hard-working and effective in all of her cases. She works tirelessly to achieve justice for her clients, whom she truly cares about.’

‘Gimhani Eriyagolla is a highly committed solicitor, with a diverse practice. She is able to turn her hand to civil claims involving lots of different issues and consistently gets very good results.’

‘The Hodge Jones & Allen civil liveries and human rights practice is amazing, communication was excellent. I received full explanations of what my case would involve from the start and they made legal jargon easier for me understand.’

‘Sasha Barton – compassionate, supportive, extremely professional and knowledgable. Sarah Flanagan – extremely professional and knowledgeable. Supportive with compassion, kindness and understanding to mental health needs of clients. The confidence that both Sasha and Sarah gave to me to I will never forget and I will always be greatful for.’

Key clients

Core Participants to the Grenfell Tower inquiry

Extinction Rebellion

Undercover Policing Inquiry – International Solidarity Movement & Others

GMI & Ors

Kings College Students

Work highlights

  • Representing the family of Ella Adoo-Kissi-Debrah in a case which uses the European Convention on Human Rights to shine a light on the impact of UK Government failures to protect life in relation to air pollution.
  • Representing over 40 core participants at the Grenfell Tower Inquiry.
  • Representing over 100 core participants at the Undercover Policing Inquiry and in associated criminal and civil cases.

Howard Kennedy LLP

With its combination of media and human rights expertise, the team at Howard Kennedy LLP is a market leading adviser on cases concerning the balance between free speech and privacy, both domestically and globally; this is a core area of focus for ‘brilliant‘ Elizabeth Morley. Another area of expertise involves working with major corporates to oversee their compliance and non-financial reporting assurance in relation to business and human rights. Practice head Mark Stephens CBE regularly represents companies, individuals, and government organisations, and Nobel prize-nominated NGOs in claims relating to resource extraction, climate and environment and child labour, and is able to provide ‘bold advice where needed‘.

Practice head(s):

Mark Stephens CBE

Other key lawyers:

Elizabeth Morley


‘Howard Kennedy have great strength in depth, they fight hard for the clients and they are able to manage complex and fast moving litigation.’

‘At the partner level, Howard Kennedy boasts a number of highly capable lawyers who are equally as adept at dealing with legal issues as their clients’ broader strategic goals.’

‘The partners are supported by hard working and reliable associates.’

‘Mark Stephens: an extremely experienced lawyer who is not afraid to roll up his sleeves, and who gives bold advice where needed. Mark’s committment to his clients is unsurpassed.’

‘Elizabeth Morley: delightful and brilliant: She is a pleasure to work with and has added real value on every case on which I have worked with her. She gets clients on side and manages them throughout litigation, and she is excellent at managing a claim.’

‘Unique features are care for the client and a commitment do ensure that justice is done.’

‘Efficiency of service. Good communication between members of the legal team.’

‘Empathy with the client and care taken by senior partner Mark Stephens in supervising the work of junior colleagues.’

Key clients

The family of Christopher Allen

Charlotte Charles & Tim Dunn

Melanie Newman

Work highlights

  • Represented Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn, parents of the late Harry Dunn, in the bringing of an application for judicial review against the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and the Chief Constable of Northamptonshire Police.
  • Representing freelance investigative journalist Melanie Newman, on a pro bono basis, in her application to seek access to documents on the court file in a case in the Family Division relating to an adoption.
  • Representing the family of Christopher Allen, a journalist killed whilst reporting from South Sudan in 2017, whose death has never been officially investigated.

Irwin Mitchell

At Irwin Mitchell, the group is able to leverage the strength of ten city centre offices focusing on health and social care work to carve out a strong reputation for itself at the intersection of mental health and social services issues with human rights; this specialised offering is particularly attractive to disability charities referring claims under the Equality and Human Rights Acts. Within the firm, ‘each member of the team brings a different style and expertise‘ – from ‘giant in the fieldYogi Amin, who heads up the practice, to ‘standout‘ associate Gus Silverman, to noted senior associate Fiona McGhie. The arrival of Angela Jackman from Simpson Millar LLP in September 2021 served to further shore up the department’s capabilities.

Practice head(s):

Yogi Amin

Other key lawyers:

Fiona McGhie; Gus Silverman; Juliet Spender; Angela Jackman; Andrew Arthur


‘The team are amongst the best in this area; extremely knowledgeable, good strategic sense, they obtain excellent results for their clients through being tenacious and committed, without being aggressive.’

‘Juliet Spender is an excellent lawyer and deeply committed to her clients. She has secured superb results by combining tenacity with good judgment. She is particularly skilled at providing effective representation for clients with vulnerabilities.’

‘Led by giant in the field Yogi Amin, the IM civil liberties team is one of the strongest. They offer a friendly and thorough service backed by an organisation which exudes a solid competence.’

‘Each member of the team brings a different style and expertise which gives a real breadth of coverage.’

‘Hard working lawyers who are happy to take on difficult cases and push boundaries.’

‘Gus Silverman – excellent with clients, a pleasure to work with, really gets to grips with the law, unafraid of big challenges.’

‘Gus Silverman is a a standout practitioner. He is notable for his meticulous preparation, legal acumen, combined with first-class client skills.’

‘Excellent depth of experience, especially as regards high value and complex claims.’

McCue Jury & Partners

At McCue Jury & Partners, the breadth of work routinely handled spans the gamut of human rights work, victim class actions, and public interest litigation; transitional justice and conflict resolution, as well as negotiation on behalf of UK prisoners abroad and political prisoners worldwide, are particular areas of strength. The group is jointly helmed by Jason McCue and Matthew Jury – ‘through the highest level of personal leadership they exhibit, they are perfect role models‘. The duo are ably assisted by recommended associate Joe Snape.

Practice head(s):

Jason McCue; Matthew Jury

Other key lawyers:

Joe Snape


‘I am so glad and totally happy with the way McCue Jury are handling my very sensitive case – they go above and beyond managing my expectations and reassuring me on the case. I cannot begin to express my heartfelt thanks about what to me was/is a very stressful time but during which I was constantly kept up date with proceedings.’

‘I have now known Matthew Jury for 8 years. In my honest opinion, he is a born winner, the finest solicitor in his field in the UK. His record with us speaks for itself.’

‘A small conscientious team. A genuine human rights firm with a commitment to (and respect for) lay clients.’

‘Matthew Jury does not give up in pursuing legal points.’

‘They were very committed to fighting a difficult case while making sure we weren’t spending more money than our NGO could afford.’

‘Joe Snape has been particularly helpful and spent a lot of time making sure I was engaged with each part of the process, one where we have a number of complicating factors.

‘In the field of human rights legal practice, McCue Jury & Partners are not only utterly professional in how they approach their cases, but also totally committed to upholding the human rights of their clients. Simply put, they always put people first and their mission is to achieve justice for them.’

‘Jason McCue and Matthew Jury set the highest personal standards for all those they recruit and who work for the practice. Through the highest level of personal leadership they exhibit, they are perfect role models so that the entire practice is imbued with their vision – always for the benefit of clients – never for the practice itself.’

Key clients

Ali Hamza – family killed by forces of alleged war criminal, and Libyan presidential candidate Khalifa Haftar

Eliot Higgins of Bellingcat

British Army Veterans at inquest in Northern Ireland

Dirk Campbell – father of Anna Campbell who was killed by a Turkish air strike when fighting with People’s Protection Units in Afrin, Northern Syria

Hyde Park Justice Campaign

John Murray – police partner of WPC Yvonne Fletcher who was shot by a gunman from the Libyan Embassy in 1984

Rohingya victims of Genocide

Sarah Jane Young whose father, L/Cpl Jeffery Young was killed by the IRA’s bombing of Hyde Park in 1982

Syrian Victims of Al-Nusra Front

The family of Dennis Hutchings

Three Scottish Soldiers Justice Campaign

Victims of Libya Sponsored IRA Terrorism

Whistleblower Aid

Work highlights

  • Representing Rohingya victims of genocide in Myanmar against Facebook who, it is alleged, recklessly and/or negligently enabled their suffering.
  • Representing John Murray, who was the partner of WPC Fletcher murdered by a gunman from the Libyan Embassy in 1984.
  • Representing the claimants, all Syrian citizens, who have been forced permanently to flee their homes in Syria because of the unlawful actions of the Al-Nusra Front (ANF), a jihadist terrorist group.

Simons Muirhead Burton

Simons Muirhead Burton is best known as the founder and long-term supporter of The Death Penalty Project, which for more than three decades has provided free legal representation to thousands of individuals facing the death penalty around the world; through this vehicle, the firm has successfully challenged the constitutionality of the mandatory death penalty in thirteen countries, focusing particularly on those which retain the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. Co-founders Parvais Jabbar and Saul Lehrfreund are singled out by one client as having ‘done more to abolish the death penalty across the globe than any other individuals in the last 30 years‘.

Practice head(s):

Parvais Jabbar; Saul Lehrfreund

Other key lawyers:

Abdul Varachhia; Peter Weiss


‘I have worked with Saul Lehrfreund for over 20 years on cases. He is passionately committed to his work. His knowledge is second to none. He has immense energy and positivity. He is a joy to work with.’

‘Parvais Jabbar and Saul Lehrfreund have unrivalled experience in criminal appeals to the Privy Council and in the representation of those facing the death penalty worldwide. Parvais Jabbar is brilliant, hard-working and innovative.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar are the pre-eminent experts in legal challenges concerning the death penalty and have been for over 30 years.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar have done more to abolish the death penalty across the globe than any other individuals in the last 30 years. They truly are trailblazers, and this is recognised by the MBEs that they have both received for service to international human rights.’

‘Parvais Jabbar is the consummate death penalty litigator. His breadth of work shows Parvais’s dexterity and ability to work across a number of practice areas at the national and international level. Such skills are very rare, in my experience.’

‘The Death Penalty Project which is run by this firm is unique in providing specialist advocacy in strategic cases involving the death penalty worldwide.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund and Parvais Jabbar are excellent, committed and intelligent lawyers who always go the extra mile.’

‘The premier team in the UK for death penalty work.’

‘Saul Lehrfreund is a force of nature! The most committed and driven human rights lawyer who is realistic and strategic but also absolutely determined to save lives worldwide through his ground-breaking work.’

Key clients

Simeon Bain

Madusu Koroma

Devon Gordon, Sherwyn Hart, Deon Greenidge

Lescene Edwards

Nardis Maynard

Tafari Morrison

Shawn Campbell, Adidja Palmer, Kahira Jones, Andre St John

Roger Watson

Stephen Stubbs

Jay Chandler

Bush and Day

Patrick Lovelace

Shabba Ferguson and Jason Alexis

Evanson Mitcham

Devon Hewey

Duncan Lewis Solicitors

Duncan Lewis Solicitors is differentiated by its sizeable judicial review claimant offering, with a particular focus on immigration and unlawful detention. The firm is increasingly developing this expertise on an international platform, with recent challenges to UK government practices in Libya and Eritrea. Toufique Hossain is a ‘high profile‘ presence in the team, and takes the lead on representation of vulnerable asylum seekers, many of whom are victims of torture, sexual abuse and trafficking. James Packer is another key contact; he regularly conducts test cases concerning enforced removals from the UK and decisions to refuse legal aid.

Other key lawyers:

Ahmed Aydeed; Bahar Ata; Claire Ryan; Gergana Pentcheva; James Packer; Jenna McKinney; Nazia Khan; Rohena Wallace; Tamana Aziz; Toufique Hossain; Vicash Ramkissoon; Vilash Gami; Zofia Duszynska


‘Toufique Hossain is a high profile solicitor who remains at the forefront of immigration public law work, working with a committed and able team.’

‘Have access to a huge number of potential civil actions through long years of work preventing removals and securing release from detention. A big team with big capacity. Brave and inventive in the points they take.’

‘DL are running most of the most important immigration and immigration-detention related cases. That is down to Toufique Hossain and his unique ability to identify and foster talented younger lawyers. All his team speak of that ability.’

‘Duncan Lewis is able to provide a high quality service that includes bringing ground breaking cases on legal aid. I am not aware of any other firm that can do such a high volume of legal aid work while maintaining such high standards. They also show great commitment to their clients.’

‘Duncan Lewis Solicitors have a great depth of experience in this area. They have been involved in some of the most important cases in this area in the last 10 years.’

‘Their public law team is extremely active in both judicial review claims for unlawful detention and civil claims for false imprisonment. They are also heavily involved in the trafficking arena, both in claims for judicial review and civil/human rights claims. They are incredibly well prepared, dedicated and really know their stuff.’

‘James Packer is one of the most astute lawyers I know. He is utterly fearless, fighting for his clients with tenacity, even when the odds seem stacked against him. He has an extremely high level of knowledge and exceptional judgment. He is strongly recommended for tactical high level litigation.

‘The firm is extremely visible in the sector and has an excellent team of solicitors who are extremely hard working and conscientious. They prepare the cases very well and have a clear understanding of the principles and issues in question.’

Work highlights

  • Acting for the claimant in a test case brought by a confirmed victim of modern slavery challenging the refusal to grant her leave whilst she pursues an asylum claim.
  • Representing the claimants in a judicial review challenge of an unlawful Home Office decision which has wider implications for the many children stranded in the detention camps in Syria who were born after their parents were deprived of their citizenship.
  • Represented the claimant in a judicial review brought against the Lord Chancellor, which culminated in the publication of changes to the Immigration and Asylum Specification of the Standard Civil Contract.

Hausfeld & Co LLP

Hausfeld & Co LLP has a particularly stellar reputation for utilising its cross-border capabilities to develop ‘cutting-edge trans-national litigation strategies‘ at the intersection of public and environmental law; the firm is currently instructed on behalf of Greta Thunberg and 13 other youth climate activists from around the world. The team of ‘innovative thinkers‘ is headed up by Ingrid Gubbay, and also includes recommended senior practitioners Wessen Jazrawi – who shows ‘enormous committment to her clients and the vindication of their rights‘ – and Sarah Moore – whose ongoing highlights include representing 40 gymnasts in cases against British Gymnastics arising out of alleged physical and emotional abuse.

Practice head(s):

Ingrid Gubbay

Other key lawyers:

Wessen Jazrawi; Sarah Moore; David Lawne; Luke Grimes


‘Hausfeld’s civil liberties and human rights practice is going from strength to strength, alongside their other areas of expertise. With an eye on cutting-edge trans-national litigation strategies, with the public interest in mind, the firm is bringing its significant expertise in the group litigation and claimant sphere to bear on important issues.’

‘Hausfeld is an international firm and is able to draw on a multitude of excellent lawyers and to run a wide variety of cases, safe in the knowledge that it has the expertise and experience to do so very competently. My experience of working with the civil liberties and human rights team members is that they are all highly proficient lawyers with a strong committment to their clients and the preservation of their rights.’

‘Ingrid Gubbay is well recognised for having a wealth of expertise and experience in human rights work with a particular emphasis on environmental cases where the rights of individuals are at stake – whether that be in the domestic or international arena.’

‘Wessen Jazrawi is a member of the team that stands out for praise and recognition. In an ongoing case, Wessen has once again shown to me her enormous committment to her clients and the vindication of their rights. Throughout Wessen has ensured that my clients understand the process and that they are thereby able to play a part in forming the case and the arguments and the way in which the case is framed.’

‘They are simply without peer in their attention to detail and their bid to “get it right” for the client. Very team focussed and very driven.’

‘Attention to detail and collaborative working to ensure best outcomes is an absolute hallmark of their operation… and it works!’

‘The team at Hausfeld have supported us pro bono on two human rights strategic litigation cases. The team are excellent to work with; their knowledge and expertise is unmatched, and they are fantastic with regards to understanding our needs and communicating any updates.’

‘The individuals within the team that we have worked with at Hausfeld are all extremely knowledgable, helpful, and innovative thinkers.’

Key clients

38 individual ex-gymnasts

Save the Children International

16 child petitioners including Greta Thunberg

Greta Thunberg and 13 other youth climate activists from around the world

A group of villagers in Zambia

Work highlights

  • Acting on behalf of 38 gymnasts – including 4 Olympians – to bring a claim in negligence against British Gymnastics based on vicarious liability.
  • Instructed by Save the Children International to intervene in a landmark climate change legal action in the European Court of Human Rights.

ITN Solicitors

ITN Solicitors is a leading firm in the regulation of protest arena; the team undertakes a wide range of civil actions arising from wrongful arrests and assaults, public law challenges arising from policing issues, and advisory work with NGOs and campaigning organisations. In addition, the group regularly represents activists who are the subject of injunction proceedings – current clients include Extinction Rebellion and anti-HS2 campaigners. National security and prisoner rights are further areas of expertise. Lochlinn Parker heads up the practice.

Practice head(s):

Lochlinn Parker

Other key lawyers:

William Kenyon; Sam Hall


‘ITN’s civil liberties practice is wide ranging and the team has a highly regarded reputation within the sector. The team undertakes high profile and complex damages claims and associated judicial review matters.’

‘William Kenyon is a really quick thinker and can get to grips with complex matters quickly, including cases involving closed material procedures (secret evidence).’

‘Sam Hall is a diligent associate with whom I am working on a complex national security matter.’

‘Fantastic team that covers the entire spectrum of civil liberties and human rights cases. Particular expertise in protest law.’

‘Lochlinn Parker – An outstanding solicitor. Very well respected for representing protestors in civil claims. An author of the Protest Handbook, one of the leading practitioner texts, he wrote the chapter of police claims.’

‘William Kenyon – A very good solicitor. Great client care and legal acumen. Always on top of the detail in his cases.’

‘ITN is well established as a go to firm for anyone seeking to challenge the decision of a public body. Most of their cases involve Civil Liberties. They are well known for interesting and ground breaking public law cases.’

‘William Kenyon is a go to lawyer for anyone bringing a claim in prison law. He has recently brought a series of ground breaking cases – he quickly spots novel points of law. He is very charming, and clients always return to him.’

Key clients

Hunt Monitors

HS2 campaigners

Polygraph parole condition

XR multi-Claimants

Work highlights

  • Representing Lowri Davies-Warwick, a Black Lives Matter activist who was targeted by the police to become an informant.
  • Representing two activists who are were assaulted by hunters in front of the police.
  • Acting for a large number of XR activists who were unlawfully arrested at significant protests.

Simpson Millar LLP

At Simpson Millar LLP, the ability to rely on broader public law strength is key; Imogen Jolley oversees the entire department in this area, while ‘calm headVictoria Pogge von Strandmann and ‘standout‘ practitioner Chris Callender jointly head up the public and human rights division. The firm also fields a dedicated education and children’s rights group, helmed by Dan Rosenberg and Sarah Woosey. Acting for victims of trafficking – including challenges to NRM decisions, unlawful detention cases, and civil damages claims for breaches of Article 4 – is a particular strength.

Practice head(s):

Imogen Jolley; Victoria Pogge von Strandmann; Chris Callender; Dan Rosenberg

Other key lawyers:

Verity Altaras; Sarah Woosey; Lois Clifton; Silvia Nicolaou Garcia


‘The public law team at Simpson Millar are fantastic. They are client-centred, tenacious and dedicated to the important work they do.’

‘Chris Callender is a highly experienced, standout public law solicitor with unrivalled expertise in cases involving the rights of children and young people.’

‘Simpson Millar are a hugely well regarded firm – and for good reason – for being exceptionally capable, dedicated and firmly client focused. They have a varied team who are consistently outstanding and are a real go to for complex and urgent cases.’

‘Victoria Pogge von Strandmann is an outstanding partner who is ever a calm head in the most urgent and complex of cases. She is brilliant in tricky claims that others may shy away from, and is strategic, collaborative and highly knowledgeable.’

‘Verity Altaras is an outstanding solicitor who gives 100% to every client, every step of the way. She never shies away from complex claims, retains a firm client focus and is a real force of nature in urgent claims.’

‘The team really are top echelon. Silvia Nicolaou Garcia is really quite exemplary. Her calm demeanor wins clients’ trust, and her legal judgement is spot on – making a really powerful combination of skills. Very well known for her work with victims of modern slavery. Victoria Pogge von Strandmann is also a very well known and respected exemplary partner.’

‘This is a strong team with a full range of expertise. Dan Rosenberg has particular strength and experience. He is one of the most imaginative and creative lawyers I know – always thinking of new angles and ways of thinking.’

‘Simpson Millar are dedicated and committed lawyers, representing some of the most vulnerable in society. They have wide ranging expertise across the board. They are extremely collaborative with other solicitors and NGOS, but at the same time ensure that it is their own client’s needs that are the forefront of every decision.’

Work highlights

  • Acted for the lead appellant MN, an Albanian victim of human trafficking who challenged the Home Office’s failure to identify her as a victim of trafficking at the conclusive grounds stage in the case of R (MN & IXU) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [EWCA] Civ 174.
  • Acted on behalf of LXA in a claim against the Local Authority for failing to remove LXA from the care of their parents.
  • Represents the Applicant (now Claimant), who was a vulnerable 14-year-old unaccompanied child in France, in a damages claim for breach of his Article 8 ECHR rights arising from a judicial review challenging the UK’s refusal to transfer him to reunite with his sister and other family members in the UK under the Dublin III Regulation.


The Sinclairslaw offering has drawn on its traditional strength in the education and community care sectors to ‘leapfrog into being a top player in public law with a human rights and civil liberties dimension‘; although the firm retains particular strength in these core fields, the group is now instructed by notable clients from a wide range of sectors. Senior associate Helen Gill leads with ‘instinctive foresight‘ – her team includes such seasoned specialists as ‘ultimate rainmakerPaul Conrathe and ‘font of practical knowledgeJohn Ford.

Practice head(s):

Helen Gill

Other key lawyers:

John Ford; Louise Eardley; Paul Conrathe


‘Sinclairs have done incredible work in recent years in starting and pursuing interesting and important public law cases.’

‘Paul Conrathe is the ultimate rainmaker in claimant public law. He has expertise, experience and contacts which are second to none in developing new claims, securing funding and getting them off the ground. If he didn’t exist, he would have to be invented.’

‘Helen Gill has been absolutely amazing.’

‘Helen Gill has the instinctive foresight to ensure the successful outcome.’

‘Sinclairs Law have brought together three of the top education law teams – each of which also has extensive general public law experience – to leapfrog into being a top player in public law with a human rights and civil liberties dimension.’

‘John Ford is an excellent and compassionate lawyer. He has excellent judgment, and that has always extended to the selection and nurture of trainees and associates whose careers he has developed, and to his care and concern for his support staff.’

‘Sinclairs have a leading reputation for public law work, which incorporates its work in relation to human rights and civil liberties. This is particularly the case for public law claims which engage education and linked areas, such as social care, but they have been involved in some very high profile public law in recent times beyond this and so offer considerable experience for judicial review work in a general sense.’

‘Helen Gill is a star individual. She is easy to work with, great with lay clients, passionate about her work, and has incisive legal knowledge for education, community care and public law matters. She is especially good on judicial review claims, which can often give rise to human rights issues.’

Work highlights

  • Representing Cathy Gardner and Fay Harris in a judicial review claim against the Secretary of State for Health, NHS England and Public Health England for their failures to adequately protect their fathers from Covid, in particular the decision to discharge patients from hospitals into care homes without testing.
  • Advised and successfully represented Harry Miller in a claim for Judicial Review against Humberside Police and College of Policing for breach of Art 10, ECHR, challenging action to record a non-crime hate incident against him and the national Hate Crime Operational Guidance that required incidents to be recorded against ‘suspects’ without evidence or investigation.


Formed in 2020, AWO is a boutique firm solely dedicated to data rights; the team comprises established specialists with expertise in the fields of reputation management, data protection and ethics, and human rights online. Founding partner Ravi Naik‘s recent caseload is illustrative of the practice’s breadth, and spans issues concerning predictive policing, corporate misuse of data and facial recognition.

Practice head(s):

Ravi Naik

Other key lawyers:

Alex Lawrence-Archer; Cassie Roddy


‘AWO went above and beyond what I could have expected of them. They are always ready to help and to answer queries and never fail to respond in a timely manner.’

‘The advice I have received from them has always been of the highest quality with appropriate consideration given to the pros and cons of all decisions we have taken together.’

‘Their knowledge and expertise has given me enormous confidence in what has been a challenging and traumatic case. I would highly recommend them.’

‘Cassie Roddy, Ravi Naik and their team are outstanding. They have supported me through my case with compassion and humanity combined with clear, rational and considered advice at all times.

‘They are always available to answer my queries and have often been voices of calmness and pragmatism when things have become stressful.’

‘I feel they genuinely believe in the merits of my case and have committed themselves fully to it. They have always listened to my thoughts and concerns and have encouraged me to say what I think.’

‘They have a truly expert team who are also approachable and great to work with.’

‘They have unparalleled expertise on data protection law and often apply this to broader human rights and civil liberties issues.’

Key clients

Global Witness

The Citizens

Clean Up Gambling

Open Rights Group

Institute for the Future of Work

Open Society Foundation (OSF)

Work highlights

  • Acted on behalf of Jim Killock and Dr Michael Veale to challenge the Information Commissioner’s Office use of its regulatory powers to progress a complaint under the Data Protection Act 2018.
  • Acting for Tanya O’Carroll to challenge a social media platform’s processing of the client’s data for behavioural advertising and direct marketing purposes.
  • Instructed to serve as the legal advisors for the George Washington University working group on “Access to Data Held by Digital Platforms for the Purposes of Scientific Research”.

Gold Jennings

Gold Jennings has carved out a niche representing disadvantaged and marginalised individuals and groups in connection with wrongs committed by the state. Matthew Gold brings a ‘strategic, bold and passionate approach‘ to his role as the head of the civil actions against public authorities offering, while Clare Jennings oversees the public law department – predominantly focusing on judicial reviews – with ‘technical brilliance, strategic oversight and exceptional creativity‘.

Practice head(s):

Matthew Gold; Clare Jennings

Other key lawyers:

Chez Cotton; Rachel Etheridge; Jessica Roome


‘Although a relatively small firm, Gold Jennings punches well above its weight in civil liberties and human rights matters, particularly in public law challenges. The firm’s solicitors are clever, creative and tenacious. Their pre-action letters and witness statements are exquisite and Gold Jennings’ solicitors are always very much mindful of not allowing the client’s voice to be lost amongst the excitement of running a novel or creative point of law.’

‘Clare Jennings: In every case that I have worked with Clare on, I have been in awe of her technical brilliance, strategic oversight and exceptional creativity, but what makes her especially deserving of recognition is that she never allows those things to overshadow her empathy and humanity. She has a very collaborative working style.’

‘Very personal approach. Very friendly, down to earth. Humanity on display.’

‘The team stands out as a passionate, dedicated, innovative and ground-breaking team. The clients are all important. Matthew Gold works really hard to make sure they feel totally comfortable, completely informed and therefore confident in the decisions they make.’

‘Matthew Gold stands out. He takes a huge interest in all of his cases. Whilst rightly delegating specific tasks and cases to more junior staff, he is always completely on top of the case whenever he needs to be either because important decisions need to be made or because it is going to court.’

‘Matthew Gold – decades of holistic experience and a joy to work with.’

‘In my experience, Matthew Gold takes a strategic, bold and passionate approach to his client’s cases; and a sympathetic and supportive approach to their needs. He is sharp and responsive and the service he provides is both skilled and compassionate.’

‘My experiences with Gold Jennings were stupendous through and through. I was handled with the utmost care and professionalism. I also appreciate working with people that care for you on a personal level, instead of handling you as a “case”.’

Key clients

Group challenge – autistic adults in residential care homes

Group challenge regarding Free School Meals

AA & Ors (Pupil Premium group challenge)

Work highlights

  • Representing asylum seekers in an ongoing challenge to the mass seizure of their mobile phones on small boat arrivals.  
  • Successful acted in a judicial review challenging the use of the Napier Barracks.
  • Successfully challenged the policy of imposing curfew on asylum seekers residing in hotels.

Hudgell Solicitors

Hudgell Solicitors fields an ‘excellent, ambitious and motivated‘ group, dedicated to challenging the failings of state bodies and institutions; this regularly includes representing clients in Article 2 inquests. The work of the department is overseen by executive chairman Neil Hudgell, whose approach ‘strikes an enviable balance between strategic thinking and human empathy‘. Civil liberties practice head Vicky Richardson is noted as being ‘smart, incisive and considered in her team leadership‘.

Practice head(s):

Neil Hudgell; Vicky Richardson

Other key lawyers:

Terry Wilcox


‘My experience is that their team routinely provides excellent client care; they are responsive and proactive. They are quick to consider the wider needs of their clients and the bigger picture beyond the case to hand. This is a skill which is reflected in their involvement in some of the most high profile claims and cases in the last 12 – 18 months.’

‘Neil Hudgell leads an exceptional team. He holds the trust and confidence of his clients in a way which I’ve rarely seen. He approaches his business and his clients’ claims in a way which strikes an enviable balance between strategic thinking and human empathy.’

‘Vicky Richardson is smart, incisive and considered in her team leadership. She delivers on the law while being both responsive and approachable.’

‘They are very client-centric and have an excellent and professional relationship with their clients. They are attentive to advice and always strive to achieve the tasks that we have agreed. An excellent, ambitious and motivated team.’

‘Terry Wilcox is a standout solicitor. He runs a tight ship, supports his team of solicitors, trainees and caseworkers and gets the best out of them. He is excellent with clients.’

‘Hudgell Solicitors have the ability to truly understand what a client wants, and to communicate with them in a sensible, sensitive manner. They do not seek to pursue cases as causes where the client does not want this. They are able to manage a client’s expectations suitably and always be on hand to guide a client through a delicate case.’

‘Vicky Richardson is a star among the civil liberties field. She is able to manage the civil liberties team with extreme diligence and has successfully taken it from strength to strength.’

‘Neil Hudgell is an outstanding lawyer, and recognised as such widely. He regularly appears as a commentator on TV and radio. He is, in every respect, a staunch defender of human rights.’

Key clients

Various (Post Office Horizon conviction appeals)

Families at the Manchester Arena Inquiry

Injured victims of the Manchester Arena bombing

Clients in claims against Randox Testing Services

Work highlights

  • Representing former subpostmasters across England and Wales who were victims of the Post Office Horizon Scandal.
  • Representing families who lost loved ones in the Manchester Arena bombing at a public inquiry.
  • Represented the families of four young gay men murdered by serial killer Stephen Port at an inquest into their deaths.

Mishcon de Reya LLP

Under the leadership of managing associate Katy Colton, the politics and law group at Mishcon de Reya LLP regularly collaborates with departments across the firm, to offer cross-disciplinary expertise in the domain of civil liberties and human rights. Focused practitioners handle cases ranging from judicial reviews for vulnerable members of society, to mandates with a nexus to employment, data protection and environmental law. The team also demonstrates notable strength in the immigration field, particularly when defending politically motivated persecutions; Kamal Rahman is the name to note for such work.

Practice head(s):

Katy Colton

Other key lawyers:

James Libson; Maria Patsalos; Harry Eccles-Williams; Kamal Rahman; Shulamit Aberbach


‘Katy Colton is a high-flying managing associate. She is an excellent lawyer but also supremely enjoyable to work with. She also has the business and political awareness that few lawyers of her seniority have.’

‘Many seasoned human rights lawyers who are exceptionally creative.’

‘They think creatively about human rights cases and are able to work on highly strategic litigation with great effect.’

‘In my personal experience, MDR has one of the finest teams in this area of practice and has been providing excellent service in this area.’

‘I have had an excellent experience working with them and their teams are very well entrenched into the global developments and are fully aware of what is happening all over the world.’

‘Kamal Rahman is a market leader in this area of practice and I have seen that for myself as I witnessed 100% dedication in the subject and the passion for the cause. Not only professionally, but Kamal also has a personal compassion towards human rights and that is what makes her the best in the industry.’

‘Shulamit Aberbach was outstanding in her work to support our case. She expertly kept track of a lengthy and complicated case and provided innovative solutions which significantly aided our work. She outstandingly communicated complex legal solutions which enabled the client to remain at the centre of the decision-making process.’

Key clients

Members of the Rohingya community

Ukraine Justice Alliance

Afghan judges

Project for the Registration of Children as British Citizens (‘PRCBC’)

Jenny, The Accidental American

Stella Creasy MP

Black Justice Project

The Lifescape Project

One Young World and the Democracy and Culture Foundation

Climate Migration Project

Janus Friis

Wangzou Meng

Work highlights

  • Representing members of the Rohingya community in an action to hold Facebook to account for its role in facilitating human rights abuses in Myanmar.
  • Advising members of the Afghan judiciary and legal profession on matters surrounding their attemtps to expedite the urgent issue of their visa applications to escape severe threats to their life and property by the Taliban.
  • Partnered with One Young World and the Democracy and Culture Foundation to devise and lead the Global Youth Climate Inquiry, which was the first legally-based approach to use an inquiry to seek, test and present evidence from global youth leaders on climate injustice and the threats to the rights of education and freedom of expression posed by climate change.

Wilson Solicitors LLP

Really deep knowledge runs all the way through the team‘ at Wilson Solicitors LLP. James Elliot helms the offering, and is supported in managing the department by a core roster of specialised partners, comprising Katy Robinson, who specialises in community care and migrants’ rights; Nina Rathbone Pullen, an expert in the field of human trafficking and unlawful detention; and Nusrat Uddin, whose focus is on victims of trafficking and modern slavery.

Practice head(s):

James Elliott

Other key lawyers:

Katy Robinson; Nkiru Okafor; Nina Rathbone Pullen; Nusrat Uddin


‘Wilsons Solicitors LLP are really at the top of the game in the civil liberties and human rights field. In the immigration cross-over areas in particular, they are known as being leaders in their field. They are brilliant and dedicated lawyers.’

‘They are incredibly well prepared, dedicated and really know their stuff. But importantly, they never forget that there is always a client at the heart of every important legal challenge.’

‘Nkiru Okafor –is making a real name for herself with her exceptional judgment and tenacity.’

‘James Elliott is a bible on unlawful detention and a pleasure to work with.’

‘Wilsons are an excellent choice for complex human rights claims, particularly in the field of immigration, human trafficking and forced labour.’

‘Nusrat Uddin is highly intelligent and very committed, with excellent contacts amongst NGOs in the UK and abroad.’

‘Excellence in knowledge and experience – particularly in unlawful detention claims.’

‘Arising in large part from their position as one of the pre-eminent immigration detention firms, Wilsons have a really strong civil liberties and human rights team now. Really deep knowledge runs all the way through the team.’

Work highlights

  • Represented the claimant in a compensation case arising out of losses he faced as the result of a decision wrongly taken that he had obtained an English Language Qualification.
  • Representing all the citizens in the ongoing judicial review against the UK authorities’ decision to award new contracts to supplier of PPE gloves, Supermax, despite clear indicators of forced labour.
  • Representing a child claimant who was arrested by the metropolitan police on suspicion of cannabis cultivation.