The Legal 500

Twitter Logo Youtube Circle Icon LinkedIn Icon

Doughty Street Chambers

Work 020 7404 1313
Fax 020 7404 2283
Bristol, London, Manchester

David Rhodes

Work 020 7404 1313
Doughty Street Chambers (Doughty Street Chambers)


David is a specialist criminal defence advocate with a busy practice in the Crown Court as trial counsel alone and as a led junior across the full spectrum of offences including murder, serious violence, sexual offences, kidnapping, blackmail, armed robbery, drugs supply and importation, immigration offences, public disorder and offences of dishonesty. He also has developing appellate practice and is a co-author of Taylor on Criminal Appeals (2nd ed OUP 2012). David has particular expertise in protestor cases, raising issues of freedom of speech and necessity. He has represented activists and dissidents from anticapitalists to naturists. He has represented many climate change activists arising from protests around the country, from the Kingsnorth power station in Kent to the Drax power station in North Yorkshire (the Drax 29). In 2010, he represented the Didcot 20 (aggravated trespass at Didcot Power Station, in which activists occupied the chimney stack for three days). In 2011, David was part of the defence team which forced the collapse of the high-profile case of protestors at the Ratcliffe-on-Soar power station in Nottinghamshire, after they discovered the role of PC Mark Kennedy, a police officer who had been working undercover in the environmental movement for seven years. The DPP has now invited the Drax 29 to appeal their convictions because of the involvement of Mark Kennedy in that case also. He was recently involved in the high profile case challenging the legality of police powers resulting in the arrest of 182 cyclists engaged in the Critical Mass Cycle Ride on the night of the Olympics 2012 opening ceremony. David is co-author of the seminal practitioners textbook: The Law of Public Order and Protest (Oxford University Press- March 2010). David is a member of the Extradition team and has experience of extradition work both in the Magistrates Court and in the High Court. His landmark case of Agius v Malta [2011] EWHC 759 (Admin) put human rights considerations back at the heart of European (EA W) extradition cases. His recent case of Laskowska v Poland [2012] was one of the first cases to succeed on Article 8 grounds where the rights of the child prevailed.


Called 2002; Middle Temple. Publications of note: Human Rights in the Investigation & Prosecution of Crime (Jonathan Cooper and Madeline Colvin eds) – OUP 2009; The Law of Public Order and Protest (co-author) – OUP 2010.


Criminal Bar Association; Liberty; Amnesty International.


Benton Park School, Leeds; University of York (BA Hons, 1st class, history and politics); University of Berkley (visiting scholar); University of Oxford (M Phil, European politics); City University (PGDL).


Captain of the King’s Bench Walk Cricket Club, a wandering team of barrister-cricketers.

London Bar

Crime (general crime)

Within: Crime (general crime) – Leading juniors

David Rhodes - Doughty Street ChambersAn excellent criminal advocate who is meticulous in his preparation.

[back to top]

Back to index

Legal Developments worldwide

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to