Rebecca is listed as a leading Band 1 silk in criminal law in the current edition of Chambers & Partners. She has extensive experience in the most serious, complex and high-profile criminal trials and appeals. She accepts instructions in both private and publicly funded cases as well as on a public access basis.
Cases of note in 2019 include R v Timothy Eastgate and R v Lewis Ludlow. In Eastgate she successfully represented the first of four defendants charged with domestic and international cocaine trafficking. Mr Eastgate was alleged to sit at the top of an organised crime group with a geographical reach within the UK from the South West of England, to London and the South East, and to Liverpool in the north, and beyond the shores of the UK into Spain, Holland, Switzerland and Ireland. Following submissions on behalf of Mr Eastgate in relation to inadequacy of disclosure, concerns in relation to the legality of investigatory techniques and the appointment of special counsel, the prosecution offered no evidence. Not guilty verdicts were entered on all counts. In Ludlow she appeared for a young British man with autism recruited by IS and charged with preparing acts of terrorism, namely an attack on members of the public by driving a vehicle along the pavement in Oxford Street, central London.
Rebecca’s ‘career cases’ include Anxiang Du, murder of 4 members of the same family following an acrimonious business dispute; Al-Khawaja and Tahery v UK, European Court of Human Rights, admissibility of hearsay evidence; Jim Devine MP, charged with false claims in relation to parliamentary expenses; Mamdouh Hamza, soliciting the murder of four members of the Egyptian Government, undercover police officers posing as former SAS contract killers; Naseer v USA, extradition sought by the USA in relation to an alleged Al Qaeda plot to cause explosions in central Manchester, appeal concerned with the prohibition against inhuman and degrading treatment and the conditions of detention in US ‘Supermax’ prisons to which terrorist suspects are subjected; Bruce Childs, appeal against convictions for 6 murders in the 1970s, described by the Crown in open court as “one of the gravest cases in British forensic history”, false confession and alleged police malpractice; Grant, appeal against conviction for murder; abuse of process, police using covert listening devices to record solicitor/client conversations in breach of legal professional privilege; Farnell v CCRC, the first ever successful judicial review of a decision of the CCRC not to refer a case back to the Court of Appeal; R v Lambert, House of Lords, compatibility of s.28 Misuse of Drugs Act with Article 6 (2) ECHR, retrospective effect of Human Rights Act in criminal proceedings.
Rebecca also regularly provides advice on criminal related matters including: advice on ‘hate speech’ and terrorism related material to a major online retailer; to an International Trade Association in relation to the potential liability of the company and its officers arising from fraudulent expenses claims by its members; to a major political party in relation to the eligibility of a candidate for the office of Police and Crime Commissioner; to the Centre For Corporate Accountability, advising the family of a man killed in an accident at work as to legality of decision by CPS not to prosecute for manslaughter..
She is also instructed in criminal related civil cases and inquiries, including The Home Office Independent Review of the forensic investigation into the killing of Damilola Taylor (representing the Forensic Science Service) and Nicklinson and L v Ministry of Justice in the Court of Appeal Civil Division, a judicial review concerned with the rights of autonomy and dignity and the law of murder and assisted suicide (representing the British Humanist Association).