The Secret Barrister, i newspaper

The Secret Barrister

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Past articles by The:

There are valid reasons for the Met to ask Sue Gray to keep parts of her report private, for now

A political ‘stitch-up’? It’s too early for such accusations to be sensibly levelled → Read More

Harper's Law is deeply troubling, and our politicians are too cowardly to admit it

There is no evidence at all that a mandatory life sentence for unintentional deaths will deter a single would-be killer. This is about vengeance, not deterrence → Read More

I’m a prosecutor and I can see through Boris Johnson’s criminal justice con

While Mr Johnson is lying to you about the solution to crime, the rest of the criminal justice system rots. → Read More

Shamima Begum may not deserve your sympathy, but she is entitled to legal aid

Everybody – no matter what they have done or are alleged to have done – is entitled to equal treatment before the law. That is the building block not only of the rule of law, but of our entire democracy. → Read More

Peter Hitchens’ comments about Jo Cox’s killer betray a fundamental ignorance of the basic facts

A familiar sound for readers of the Mail on Sunday is the deafening cymbal-clash of Peter Hitchens colliding with reality. This last Sunday offered a particular highlight, which, although there is undoubted wisdom in leaving him alone to figuratively wander the 21stcentury in his dressing gown shouting at clouds, → Read More

Secret Barrister: These are the changes we need to make to the jury system

The relationship between a criminal barrister and a jury is a curious one. In many respects, jurors are the most important people in my working life. Whether instructed to prosecute or defend, my goal in every trial is to win the hearts and minds of the 12 strangers at the other side of the courtroom. All roads lead → Read More

What Lord Peter Hain didn’t consider when he rushed to name Philip Green

There are conflicting interests and considerations of public policy, free speech, evidence and law which deserved a fair hearing → Read More

The Secret Barrister: why ‘genuinely dangerous’ Anjem Choudary is being released onto our streets

Anjem Choudary, the Islamist preacher convicted in 2016 of inviting support for Islamic State, is to be released from prison next month, despite being described by prisons minister Rory Stewart as “genuinely dangerous”. How, it has been (not unreasonably) asked, can this be? And what, if anything, can be done about → Read More

Why we don’t need a new law to protect emergency workers from assault

Protecting emergency workers would require remedying the chaos of probation caused by Chris Grayling’s botched privatisation, so that convicts in the community can be properly supervised, managed and kept on the straight and narrow → Read More

Ben Stokes trial: Why didn’t the gay couple testify in court and nine other questions answered

Given the ongoing social and tabloid media commentary and speculation, it seems that some general pointers on the law in this area would assist → Read More

Why has Tommy Robinson been freed on bail, and what happens next?

This is not the end of it. The Court has remitted the contempt for a fresh hearing at the Crown Court before a different judge. → Read More

The report on disclosure in criminal cases confirms one thing: the justice system is broken

Today the House of Commons Justice Committee publishes a scathing report confirming what criminal law practitioners have been saying for years: the criminal justice system is broken. The report considers the chronic and widespread problems with disclosure in criminal cases. Disclosure sounds like a dry administrative → Read More

What you need to know about Tommy Robinson’s appeal, and what happens next

Judgment was reserved, meaning the Court’s decision will not be known for another couple of weeks. However it is worth, given the events of yesterday, having a quick look at what happened → Read More

Don’t wear skirts, and nine other ways people can protect themselves from crime

Today marked a milestone in the magnificent campaign by Gina Martin to persuade Parliament to legislate against “upskirting”, the intrusive practice of taking photographs of a person under clothing (usually their skirt) without permission. A Private Member’s Bill to create a specific criminal offence of upskirting → Read More

Britain's candid anonymous barrister explains why the law is broken

You better hope you don't need to use the law if you're broke they say → Read More

Debunking the myths around the Tommy Robinson contempt of court case

It can now be reported that Tommy Robinson, the former leader of the English Defence League, convicted fraudster, sometime-football hooligan and self-reinvented free speech advocate, was on Friday 25 May 2018 imprisoned for 13 months for contempt of court after livestreaming footage of participants in a criminal → Read More

Dismantling the four main arguments against anonymity for rape suspects

The public cannot un-learn, and, as Google demonstrates, do not forget → Read More

Your questions answered on the unusual and complex John Worboys case

On Wednesday 28 March 2018, the High Court handed down its landmark judgment in the case of John Worboys, upholding the challenge by two of his victims to the Parole Board’s decision to release him. The judgment runs to over fifty pages and does not make for easy reading, so here’s a breakdown of this unusual and → Read More

Why did the police fight compensation awarded to victims of John Worboys?

In a nutshell, what was today’s Supreme Court judgment about? Two of the victims of serial sex offender John Worboys have successfully brought a claim for → Read More

Why is John Worboys, a man who raped “hundreds of women”, being released from prison after only 9 years?

Storm clouds are gathering over the news that former taxi driver John Worboys, the convicted rapist who police believe may have drugged and attacked hundre → Read More